Breaking news

As Winthrop’s shooting death case takes its turn, officials say the shooter who killed the man is not charged

As Winthrop’s shooting death case takes its turn, officials say the shooter who killed the man is not charged
As Winthrop’s shooting death case takes its turn, officials say the shooter who killed the man is not charged

Maine State Police detectives and evidence recovery technicians investigate in October 2020 a mobile home on Squire Court in Winthrop where Joshua Martin, 30, was shot and killed. A woman originally charged with murder in the case had that charge dropped on Tuesday. Andy Molloy/Kennebec Journal File

AUGUSTA — A New York woman originally charged with murder in the 2020 shooting death of a New York man at a Winthrop mobile home park has had that charge dismissed as part of a plea deal with prosecutors in the state who admitted that she had not fired the gun that killed him.

Another woman, from Connecticut, has now been arrested and charged with murder in connection with the same death.

Court testimony on Tuesday said Kiera Francis30, of the Bronx, a borough of New York, did not shoot the late Joshua Martin – another man did, although that man has not been charged.

Connecticut woman Skylee Negron, 24, is not charged with shooting Martin, but has been charged with murder in his death. A felony murder charge can be laid in Maine when a victim dies while certain crimes, including robbery, are being committed and the crime in which the suspect was involved is considered a cause of death.

The puzzling twist of the investigation and prosecution in Martin’s shooting death came out Tuesday as part of Francis’ plea and sentencing on the only remaining charge, reckless driving with a dangerous weapon. His charges of murder and robbery were dismissed by a district attorney.

Martin was shot and killed in a mobile home on Squire Court in Winthrop in October 2020.

With the Class A murder and robbery charges dismissed, Francis was sentenced for the remaining Class C reckless driving with a dangerous weapons charge to five years in prison with all but 672 of those days suspended and two years of probation. The 672 days were selected because that’s the time Francis has already served after her arrest, so she should be released shortly, according to Scott Hess, one of her defense attorneys along with Lisa Whittier.

Attorney Lisa Bogue, assistant attorney general, told Judge Michaela Murphy that the state now believes a man, whom she identified by last name but whom the Kennebec Journal does not name because he is not was not charged with a crime, shot Martin. She said he has not been charged in the shooting.

A spokesperson for the state attorney general’s office later declined to say whether the man would be charged in the case.

The man allegedly shot and killed Martin after Martin and Francis fought over a gun Francis was holding, and, in this fight, Francis was apparently shot in the leg. The man then shot Martin.

The scuffle over the gun began after Martin, at least one witness told police, used a window to enter the mobile home occupied by Francis and others. The two, who had previously been romantically involved, then argued for two or three hours. At times the argument was heated and a witness told police he saw Francis waving a gun – a Smith and Wesson that was not the gun that fired the shot that killed Martin.

Maine State Police detectives and evidence recovery technicians in October 2020 photograph vehicles and a mobile home on Squire Court in Winthrop where Joshua Martin was killed. A woman originally charged with murder in the case had that charge dropped on Tuesday. Andy Molloy/Kennebec Journal File

Bogue said Francis reached out to other people to come and help her because she either wanted to leave the mobile home or get Martin to leave. Negron and the man apparently responded by coming to the mobile home. Bogue said that at some point items were taken from Martin during the dispute.

Martin’s supporters, including the mother of his young single child, Harrisma Kettles, and his mother, Inez Burns, testified Tuesday from Rochester, New York, via Zoom, that Martin’s family is devastated by his death and that his mother killed herself because of it. They think the plea deal and sentencing Francis, who they said they feared because she threatened them before, was far too lenient.

“His mother killed herself because of this,” an emotional Kettles said on audio played in the Capital Judicial Center courtroom in Augusta. “She was the only help I had with my son, who has no father. Has no father to help him ride his bike, to take him to school. All of (Francis’) friends were there, she did. I don’t think she’s held responsible. I don’t understand how it could be self-defense when he was shot in the head.

Burns said Francis had threatened them before and threatened to kill Martin and his son.

“We’re scared of this girl, she might come and kill my daughter and my grandson,” Burns said. “So what do we do as a family, as a grandmother? She doesn’t show remorse, she’s not sad, she just sits there like a ruthless killer. My whole family is traumatized.

Bogue, asked by Murphy whether the state had investigated reports of threats against Martin’s family, said family members had mentioned feeling threatened. But, Bogue said, criticism of Francis’ phone calls while in custody did not indicate she made any threats. She said family members and Francis had apparently had differences before Martin’s death.

A criminal complaint filed with the courts during the arrest of Negron, who made her first court appearance on October 21 after being extradited from New York, alleges on October 3, 2020 that she “acts alone or with one or several others in the commission or attempt to commit, or immediately fleeing after committing or attempting to commit murder and/or robbery, Skylee Negron or another participant actually caused the death of a human being, namely Joshua Martin, and death was reasonably foreseeable consequence of such commission, attempt or escape.

Murphy said it would be an understatement to say that the criminal murder case against Francis would be difficult for the state to prove beyond a reasonable doubt, and agreed that the plea deal, while difficult for Martin’s family, was a reasonable result.

“There have been twists and turns in this case, for sure,” she said.

Tuesday’s hearing was originally scheduled as a bail hearing for Francis, but Murphy said she was told the two sides had reached an agreement.

Francis was arrested by police in Waterville during a traffic stop in February 2021.

” Previous

Classes will resume today in community colleges and high schools in Maranacook after the identification of a threatening suspect

Next “

Asked to testify, Houlton man linked to firearms used in Canada’s worst mass shooting says ‘I can’t do it’

Related stories

. So the case dead by bullet Winthrop takes his turn the responsible say shooter who killed the man is not charged

. Winthrops shooting death case takes turn officials shooter killed man charged

PREV Man accused of killing daughter has been found mentally fit to stand trial
NEXT WBA orders Serrano vs. Cruz featherweight title fight