Rep. Carlos Henriquez is seeking a dismissal or finding of not guilty in his assault and battery criminal case after a previously undisclosed police report turned up during cross-examination in the trial Thursday.
Judge Michele Hogan met with Henriquez’s attorney and prosecutors Friday morning, saying the hearing’s purpose “is to make sure this defendant gets a fair and impartial trial.”
On the stand Thursday, Arlington Inspector Edward DeFrancisco described the alleged victim as appearing “nervous and upset” when he spoke with her. Defense attorney Stephanie Soriano-Mills questioned DeFrancisco whether he would include that description in his report, and then asked whether he had written only one report.
DeFrancisco said he wrote a supplemental report, which he produced from a folder. With the jury out of the courtroom Friday morning, Middlesex Assistant District Attorney Clarence Brown and Soriano-Mills quizzed Arlington police and a Middlesex prosecutor about the procedures. Late Friday morning, Hogan closed the courtroom for some additional discussion.
Soriano-Mills told Hogan she would be filing a motion. She told the News Service the motion would request a dismissal or a finding of not guilty, and not a mistrial.
A Dorchester Democrat, Henriquez allegedly drove out to Katherine Gonzalves’s mother’s home in Arlington around 3 a.m. July 8, 2012, and then pulled a little ways down the street and climbed into the back seat to make out with the then 23-year-old.
When Gonzalves told Henriquez that she couldn’t leave with him, he allegedly became angry, back-handing, grabbing by the throat and punching the woman before driving into Boston, where she exited the vehicle near Northeastern University.
Henriquez has maintained that the allegations are “completely untrue,” and his attorney has highlighted discrepancies between reports of Gonzalves’s statements taken by Boston, Northeastern University and Arlington police, as the case changed jurisdictions.
In the hearing Friday morning, Arlington Inspector Gina Bassett, who is also the evidence and property officer and the police prosecutor who handles requests from the district attorney, said she had not received any omnibus request for documentation in the case nor any specific request for the supplemental report. Bassett said she does not keep copies of discovery requests and the only way she would know about the supplemental report would be if she looked for it.
“The district attorney’s office never asked for all records as it relates to this case?” asked Soriano-Mills, who said she had made such a request to the DA.
“I don’t recall having received a general discovery request,” Bassett said.
Bassett said she had received a request in January for information related to an incident in Roxbury in December, and was unable to provide any information about that.
On July 20, 2012, DeFrancisco and the alleged victim, Katherine Gonzalves, met in Woburn with prosecutor Suzanne Kontz, who was then the chief of the domestic violence unit and now oversees domestic violence programming.
A prosecutor who tries cases in superior courts where felonies can be charged, Kontz asked DeFrancisco to document the meeting – which he did in his supplemental report – and on Aug. 13, 2012, she “kicked the case back” to district court. Soriano-Mills said the original district court prosecutor was Felicia Sullivan, who is no longer an assistant district attorney.
Kontz said she transferred all her files related to the case when she sent it for prosecution in the district court.
Brown said additional notes were taken at the July 20 meeting, though he said some of those notes are “privileged.”
Hogan raised a question of whether there are any additional documents that were not provided to the defense in addition to the detective’s supplemental report.
“How do we know whether there isn’t other reports or other information that hasn’t been provided,” Hogan asked Friday morning.
A little after noon, Henriquez and the attorneys left the courtroom, which remained closed off to the public in a closed session. After 1 p.m., Kogan said she would dismiss the jury for the day.