“In this case any statements made by the defendant were not voluntarily made and were taken in violation of his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination, and the statements were given without the benefit of legal counsel as guaranteed by Fifth and Sixth Amendments,” Bennett said.
Prosecutors argued that during the police interview with Townsend in September 2020 at Mansfield Correctional Institution, he was told on multiple occasions he didn’t have to say anything and was told several times he had the right to talk to a lawyer, every right to stop talking, and to remain silent.
“The entire interview lasted a little less than one hour. (Townsend) was permitted to call his mother, and the mother told him to stop talking and ask for a lawyer. The interview was terminated shortly thereafter,” Assistant Prosecutor Brad Burress wrote in the motion.
The court documents also outline that forensics point to another person as the one who fired the gun that killed Garcia-Tovar.
Townsend agreed with detective statements that he and the accomplice were being robbed by people in the car that Garcia-Tovar was driving and shots were fired.
“They tried to rob us, y’all already know,” Townsend told the detectives. “(They) pulled a gun out on us.” Townsend did not tell detectives the name of the accomplice. According to court documents the shooting was part of a marijuana deal that went bad.
Townsend, who is in prison serving a sentence for aggravated robbery not related to the slaying, is also being held in lieu of $500,000 in the murder case,
Sydney Garcia-Tovar, 16, was killed by a gunshot outside a Fairfield Twp. apartment complex in July 2018. PROVIDED/FILE