By Seth Daniel
The murder case of Revere Police Officer Dan Talbot has all but come to a quiet halt this summer.
There have been no filings for months, the information sharing process between the prosecution and defense attorneys is nearly completed, and there have been no real revelations in the case, either in the courts or on the streets, for more than a year.
Earlier this year, one of the defense attorneys requested a continuation due to a problem with the information sharing process, and that continuation has pushed the trial back to January 4, 2010.
Now, the case has been moved to Norfolk Superior Court in Dedham for the summer and fall. The last hearing in mid-May produced nothing new, and the next action in the case – another hearing – won’t occur until October 10.
A spokesman from the district attorney’s office said things have been slow lately, which would be the normal course of action for a case that is still so far off.
“There have been no recent developments in the case, and we continue to work toward the defendants’ trial,” said Jake Wark, spokesman for Suffolk County District Attorney Dan Conley.
Two of the four defense lawyers representing the accused shooters, attorneys Peter Krupp and J.W. Carney Jr., chose not to comment for this story, as has been their policy for the last couple of years.
All of this nothingness comes from a case that turned the city on its end September 29, 2007, when Officer Dan Talbot – a lifelong Revere resident – was shot fatally in the Revere High School parking lot.
Three other off-duty officers and Talbot’s fiancée were at the scene, where the group had been drinking and socializing late into the night on the baseball bleachers after having spent time drinking at Margarita’s Restaurant in the Comfort Inn.
In the aftermath, Revere Police and State Police turned the city upside down, interviewing scores of young people and neighbors, taking in frequent troublemakers and asking for any information they may have.
Finally, police made a series of arrests.
On trial for Talbot’s murder is a quartet of defendants, though the lead case is that of Robert Iacoviello Jr, 21, of 59 Thurlow Ave. He is charged with murder and is Talbot’s accused shooter. He also faces two unrelated firearms offenses.
Also charged in the case, but with lesser crimes, are Derek Lodie, 18; James Heang, 18; and Gia Nagy, 18, all of Revere. They are facing various charges of accessory to murder, though the case of all four has been enjoined.
Only Nagy is out on bail. The other three defendants have been held without bail in the Nashua Street Jail since October 2007.
Not much information was disseminated publicly at first, and the case is still very well guarded, as important toxicology reports for Talbot and other police officers haven’t been released, but earlier this year, a good deal of information began to flow.
One of the most crucial revelations was that the commonwealth offered deals to three well-known Revere young people who allegedly had knowledge of the case and agreed to testify. That agreement came as a result of their getting dismissals of ongoing criminal cases.
Some of the charges that appear to be dismissed due to the deal include assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and distribution of a Class B drug (cocaine).
One of the young people was actually put in the witness protection program and shipped off to Las Vegas for several months, at a cost to the taxpayers of over $10,000.
All three young men, according to their adult criminal records in the case file, have extensive run-ins with the law and numerous felony charges. Two of them have had run-ins with the law since making those deals, and one of them appears to be in the House of Corrections for a subsequent drug offense.
The names of all three young men are public, but the Journal has chosen to leave them anonymous for their safety.
Though some DNA testing has been done and results are yet to be released, there doesn’t appear to be much physical evidence in the case. At the moment, the case seems to revolve around the testimony of these three key witnesses that have struck deals in exchange for their testimony.
Almost certainly, Krupp will attack the credibility of those witnesses, and he appears to have begun going down that path by requesting their criminal records, their school records and other pertinent information about them.
Additionally, Krupp has submitted filings requesting information on the past professional conduct of Talbot and the other off-duty officers at the scene. That motion was denied in part, but Krupp raised serious questions about the reliability of the police officers’ stories.
“Officer Bruzzese recalled that it was Talbot who instigated the verbal argument with Lodie,” read the filing. “Officer Soto admitted that both he and Talbot had weapons on them and drew their weapons during the fight. According to Soto, both he and Talbot fired shots, and both of the weapons were removed from the scene after the incident…The officers’ conduct on the night in question is at least suspicious and raises questions about whether the officers and [Talbot’s fiancée] have told accurate stories about the sequence of events that night, especially on the issue of who drew the weapons first.”