A Beaver County Judge has ruled that prosecutors will not be allowed to show a jury the videotaped confession obtained by police from Damontae Williams, shortly after he allegedly shot Monaca Officer Alan Shaffer last July.
Judge John P. Dohanich decided the confession was inadmissible at trial because officers had violated the defendant’s rights when obtaining it. The ruling was in response to a pretrial motion filed by Assistant Public Defender Kevin Kindred last month on behalf of Williams.
“The police obtained defendant’s audio/video and written statements after the defendant immediately exercised his right to remain silent and was not advised of his Miranda rights until well after the custodial interrogation had commenced during which he made incriminating admissions,” wrote Judge Dohanich, “all in violation of the defendant’s right against self-incrimination and right to counsel.”
Beaver County Controller David Rossi has been subpoenaed to testify as a witness in the case, which is scheduled to begin this week. Rossi, who lives near the scene of the shooting, has told the Beaver Countian that he heard Williams make incriminating statements as he was being led away in handcuffs.