November 08, 2019
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Maine’s high court rejects New York man’s appeal in double murder case

Jake Bleiberg | BDN
Jake Bleiberg | BDN
A Cumberland County jury found David Marble Jr. (front) guilty Thursday of murdering an Augusta couple on Christmas morning in 2015.

HOULTON, Maine —The Maine Supreme Judicial Court has rejected the appeal of a New York man sentenced to life in prison for murdering an Augusta couple on Christmas Day 2015.

Marble appealed his conviction for the murders of Augusta residents Eric Williams, 35, and Bonnie Royer, 26, arguing that the conviction should be tossed out because evidence from a cell phone was obtained without probable cause.

Marble was convicted after a trial of two counts of murder and one count of illegal possession of a firearm. He was sentenced to life in prison for the shootings and is serving the sentences concurrently.

Marble, of Rochester, New York, shot both victims in the head because he thought Williams had stolen from him, police said. Royer was 20 to 22 weeks pregnant at the time, according to prosecutors.

His attorney, Tina Heather Nadeau, argued that the trial court erred when it denied Marble’s motion to suppress information obtained by police acting on a search warrant from his cellphone including site location information, evidence which police used to help tie Marble to shooting deaths. Marble made several calls to Williams, including one just an hour before the murders took place.

The state did not have probable cause to secure a search warrant and that the request for cellphone records was a “fishing expedition to identify people who had phone contact with the deceased and nothing more,” Nadeau said.

Writing for the majority, Justice Ellen Gorman said that the United States Supreme Court issued guidance on cell site location information in its decision in Carpenter vs. the United States. She noted that officers involved in the case complied with the case law when they sought the search warrant for data connected to Marble’s phone.

Gorman also wrote that the information in the affidavit was sufficient for the judge to determine that there was probable cause.

Marble’s nickname, “Dee Money,” was used by former Republican Gov. Paul LePage in highly publicized comments about out-of-state drug dealers. The remarks prompted a change in venue for the murder trial.

 



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