Argued: May 12, 2017
E. Paradie, Jr., Esq. (orally), Paradie, Sherman, Walker
& Worden, Lewiston, for appellant Michael R. McNaughton
T. Mills, Attorney General, and Leanne Robbin, Asst. Atty.
Gen. (orally), Office of the Attorney General, Augusta, for
appellee State of Maine
SAUFLEY, C.J., and ALEXANDER, MEAD, JABAR, HJELM, and
Michael R. McNaughton appeals from a judgment of conviction
entered in the trial court (Androscoggin County, MG
Kennedy, /.) after a jury found him guilty of
intentional or knowing or depraved indifference murder, 17-A
M.R.S. § 201 (2016), and hindering apprehension or
prosecution (Class B), 17-A M.R.S. § 753(1-B)(C)(1)
(2016). McNaughton argues that the court erred when it denied
his motion to suppress evidence of statements that he made
during a police interview and photographs, taken by law
enforcement officers, of injuries to his body. He also argues
that the court should have granted his motion for a new trial
based on his contention that the State presented perjured
testimony during his trial. We affirm the judgment.
Viewing the evidence in the light most favorable to the
State, the jury rationally could have found the following
facts beyond a reasonable doubt. See State v. Gagne,
2017 ME 63, ¶ 3, 159 A.3d 316. On Friday, April 5, 2013,
Romeo Parent, the victim in this case, informed police that
he and William True had committed a theft. As a result, True
was detained in jail for a period of time. McNaughton, who
knew both Parent and True, put out the word among
acquaintances that he planned to harm Parent for
"snitching" on True and that he was looking for
On Tuesday, April 9, 2013, McNaughton and another
acquaintance, Nathan Morton, learned that Parent was at a
pharmacy in Auburn. By this point, McNaughton had told Morton
that they needed to kill Parent. Morton drove McNaughton to
the pharmacy, where they asked Parent to get in the car with
them. Parent agreed to go with them and they picked up True
after leaving the pharmacy.
Morton drove the group-himself, McNaughton, True, and
Parent-to a remote location on South Mountain Road in Greene.
McNaughton, True, and Parent got out of the car and went down
a trail into the woods. There, McNaughton stabbed Parent in
the neck with a screwdriver. True punched and kicked Parent.
McNaughton strangled him repeatedly with a garrote, a wire
with a wooden dowel at each end, until he died.
The next day, April 10, McNaughton, True, and Morton returned
to the murder scene. McNaughton and True wrapped Parent's
body in trash bags and put it in the trunk of Morton's
car. Morton drove the group to Jug Stream in Monmouth, and
McNaughton and True threw the body into the
Law enforcement officers interviewed McNaughton in the
evening on April 11, 2013. During that interview, they
photographed injuries on McNaughton's body and collected
his clothing. Officers interviewed McNaughton again in the
early morning hours on April 12, 2013; during that interview,
McNaughton admitted to killing Parent.
On May 8, 2013, the State charged McNaughton by indictment
with intentional or knowing or depraved indifference murder,
17-A M.R.S. §201(1)(A), (B); and hindering apprehension
or prosecution (Class B), 17-A M.R.S. §
McNaughton moved to suppress evidence of incriminating
statements that he had made during the police interviews as
well as the photographic evidence of his injuries. He argued
that his statements were made involuntarily and in response
to continued questioning after he had invoked his right to
remain silent, and that the photographs of his injuries were
collected impermissibly absent a search warrant or an
exception to the Fourth Amendment's warrant requirement.
At a two-day hearing on McNaughton's motion to suppress
in May 2014, the court heard testimony from four law
enforcement officers who were involved in McNaughton's
police interviews. The court admitted in evidence transcripts
and recordings of both interviews as well as the photographs
of McNaughton's injuries.
The court denied McNaughton's motion in part, declining
to suppress the photographs collected and evidence of
incriminating statements McNaughton made up to a certain
point during the second interview. The court granted the
motion as to statements McNaughton made in response to
continued questioning after he stated "I really
don't want to speak any more on the subject" and
"I'll take Mariah, " which the court
interpreted to mean "Miranda." In its
detailed and thorough order, the court found the following
facts, which are supported by evidence admitted at the
suppression hearing. See State v. Kittredge, 2014 ME
90, ¶ 7, 97 A.3d 106.
On April 11, 2013, two police officers made contact with
McNaughton in Lewiston. McNaughton voluntarily agreed to
accompany them to the Lewiston Police Department and rode in
the back seat of their unmarked truck to the police station.
He was not handcuffed or otherwise restrained and he was not
placed under arrest. When they arrived at the police station
around 7:20 p.m., an officer escorted McNaughton to an
interview room and told him that someone would be with him
Officers first interviewed, among other individuals,
Sebastian Moody, an acquaintance of McNaughton's who, at
trial, directly implicated him in Parent's murder. By the
time they began their interview with McNaughton nearly two
hours after he had arrived at the police station, Maine State
Police Detectives Randall Keaten and John Hainey had received
information that McNaughton was responsible for Parent's
murder. Upon entering the interview room, Hainey observed
that McNaughton had several scratches that went from his chin
to his throat, and that he had a black eye and injuries to
The detectives told McNaughton that the interview would be
recorded, that he was not under arrest, that he could leave
whenever he wanted to, and that he did not have to talk to
them. McNaughton responded, "So you're giving me the
option to plead the fifth if necessary?" He was told
again that he could leave if he wanted, to which he said,
"Fair enough. I will sit right here and talk to
you." McNaughton was read Miranda warnings.
After each right was read, Hainey asked if he understood;
McNaughton responded, "Yes, Sir." Hainey asked,
"[H]aving all those rights which I just explained to you
in mind, do you wish to answer questions at this time?"
McNaughton replied, "Yes, Sir."
The detectives asked McNaughton questions about his
activities during the previous several days and his
relationships with Parent, True, Morton, and other
acquaintances. As the questions became more specific,
McNaughton made several statements about how he felt
"lost." The detectives implied that they did not
believe him when he denied knowing anything about
Parent's death. He continued to respond to the
detectives' questions. At one point, he stated that he
wanted to "leave." "In context, " the
court found, "it is clear that the reference was to
leaving Lewiston and not leaving the police
interview." McNaughton never stated that he did not
want to answer questions.
Hainey told McNaughton that the detectives needed to take
photographs of his injuries. They asked McNaughton if that
was okay and he replied, "Fair enough." Hainey
asked if he had other clothing, and McNaughton said he only
had one set of clothes and that his other clothing was in
storage and he did not have the key. Hainey told McNaughton
that due to "exigent circumstances, " they were
going to take his clothes and give him replacement clothing
and boots. Hainey and Keaten left to make arrangements for
photographs and replacement clothing, leaving McNaughton
alone in the interview room. During that time, without being
asked, McNaughton removed his sweatshirt, shirt, and belt.
Detective Herb Leighton took numerous photographs of
McNaughton's face, neck, and hand injuries. The
detectives asked questions about how the injuries occurred.
McNaughton was again told that he did not have to say
anything and that he could stop talking any time he wanted
to. Leighton collected McNaughton's clothes.
After McNaughton had replacement clothing, Hainey again told
McNaughton he could leave, continued questioning him, and
"talked about mitigating factors." McNaughton did
not say that he wanted to leave the interview. Before the
interview concluded, in response to one of the officers'
questions, McNaughton said, "I tried to say no . . .
when you asked me the same question again, it makes me want
to give you a different answer." McNaughton continued to
deny any involvement in the murder and left the police
station at about 11:30 p.m.
After McNaughton left, police questioned Morton, who gave
them additional information about McNaughton's
involvement in the murder. Morton identified the location of
the murder and went with detectives to Greene, where they
found signs of a struggle, clothing that they believed
belonged to Parent, and a screwdriver.
At 2:45 a.m. on April 12, 2013, officers made contact with
McNaughton again at an apartment in Lewiston where McNaughton
had told them he would be staying that night. McNaughton
agreed to come back to the police station for further
questioning. He was again escorted to an interview room.
Hainey and Detective Wayne Clifford entered the room at 3:08
a.m. Hainey said, "I wanted to get some more
information. We already read you Miranda, that's
still in effect. Your rights I read you earlier."
McNaughton responded, "Fair enough."
Hainey told McNaughton that he had gone to Greene with Morton
and asked McNaughton to tell them what really happened.
McNaughton said that he could not tell them. He also stated
his name and then a nine-digit number. Hainey said,
"What's that? You're not a prisoner of war,
Michael, so I don't know why you are giving us your
serial number." The detectives continued to ask
questions. The following exchange took place:
McNaughton: "You are asking some questions and I
don't want to give the answers to ...