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Lawyer For Orrego-Savala Wants His Confession To Fatal Crash Tossed

Attorney Jorge Torres says his client was not properly mirandized at the scene of the crash.

INDIANAPOLIS -- The attorney for Manuel Orrego-Savala – the man accused of killing two people in a drunken driving crash last month – has filed a motion to suppress admissions Savala made to police at the scene.

Attorney Jorge Torres, who is representing Savala in the case, filed a motion for suppression of confession on Monday in Marion County Superior Court 5.

In the motion, Torres argues that the Indiana state trooper who interviewed Savala at the scene immediately following the crash did not properly Mirandize him, and that, therefore, Savala’s statements should be inadmissible in court.

In a probable cause affidavit filed in the case, the trooper said Savala initially denied haven driven the pickup truck involved in the crash – but later said he was the driver.

Torres argues that admission amounts to a confession, and that it was improperly obtained.

The basis of Torres’ argument is that Savala reasonably believed he was under arrest at the moment the trooper began questioning him:

“Upon observing the defendant walking away from the scene, Mays activated the emergency lights of his marked police car and quickly caught up with the Defendant. Mays was in full police uniform when he ordered the Defendant to stop and start asking direct questions to the Defendant in connection with his alleged operation of the pick-up truck involved in the double fatality car crash. Under the circumstances, the Defendant reasonably believed that he was under arrest and he was not free to leave or keep walking away from the officer, therefore, Mays engaged in a custodial interrogation for purposes of the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution for which a fill advisement of Defendant’s Miranda rights was necessary.”

Torres also argues that the trooper should have known as soon as he realized it was a fatal crash that his questions to Savala were not a “mere roadside inquiry into identity, vehicle registration or other information”  but rather “specifically intended to support a criminal investigation.”

(PHOTO: RTV6)

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