Accused Winchester Murderer Due Back in Court
Thomas Mortimer, IV, will be back in court today at 2 p.m. to hear a decision on an evidentiary hearing.
On Friday afternoon, Thomas Mortimer, IV, will be back at the Middlesex Superior Court to hear a decision on an evidentiary hearing.
Mortimer is charged with four counts of first-degree murder of his mother-in-law, Ellen Ragna Stone, 64; his wife, Laura Stone Mortimer, 41; his daughter, Charlotte Mortimer, 2; and his son, Thomas “Finn” Mortimer V, 4.
Mortimer’s attorney – Denise Regan – filed a motion to remove evidence found at the scene due to a warrantless search.
Judge Julia Kern continued the hearing until Jan. 13 at 2 p.m., when she will make her decision on whether or not evidence should be suppressed from the case.
Regan argued that Winchester firefighters and police officers did not have enough evidence to enter the Windsong home without first acquiring a warrant.
“The Commonwealth failed to establish that the firefighters made reasonable entry into the home under the emergency care exception,” Regan said at the hearing.
According to Regan, the emergency personnel should have based their entry into the home on what they knew, and not what was told to them by Debra Stone Sochat. Stone Sochat took the stand in September and testified that she went to the home because she was concerned about the health of her mother – Ellen Ragna Stone.
But according to Assistant District Attorney, Adrienne Lynch, based on Stone Sochat’s concern for her mother, the firefighters had every right to enter the home without a warrant.
“It would contradict the response of an emergency if they were to do a full investigation before entering the home,” Lynch told Judge Kern.
While a final decision on the evidence will be made Friday, Kern told Regan and Lynch at the hearing that she is favoring the prosecution’s argument.
“It’s clear, in this case, that the purpose in entering the home was not to gather evidence for a criminal activity,” Kern said.