LIMA — An attorney for a man charged with robbing a gas station said Tuesday his client invoked his right to an attorney during questioning and anything he said after that should be excluded from evidence.
Attorney Zach Maisch said a videotaped recording of an interview sheriff investigators conducted with Richard L. Stoneburner will show he did ask for an attorney while investigators were in the process of reading Stoneburner his constitutional rights. Maisch urged Judge David Cheney of Allen County Common Pleas Court to look at the video.
“He pauses and you can hear him in the video, ‘No, I want a lawyer,’” Maisch said.
But Assistant Allen County Prosecutor Tony Miller said Stoneburner only said he may want an attorney and didn’t invoke that right. Stoneburner then goes on to talk to investigators, Miller said.
Stoneburner, 27, and Heather L. Stotler, 34, are charged with aggravated robbery in the case. They are accused of robbing the One Stop Shop Marathon at 4170 N. West St. A man entered the gas station with a hooded sweatshirt and black mask over his face. He had a long-barrel black revolver. He demanded cash and cigarettes, then left the store.
During another part of the interview that Maisch wants excluded from evidence is when a detective asked Stoneburner whether he wanted a cigarette and what brand of cigarettes he smokes. As it turns out, Stoneburner smokes Newport, the same cigarettes that were stolen during the robbery.
Maisch said the question puts forward a possibly incriminating response before investigators even tried to read Stoneburner his constitutional rights. But Miller said the question was random and one detectives frequently asks people they interview.
The judge said he would review the videotape and case law before issuing a ruling. Stoneburner is scheduled to stand trial March 27.
Reach Greg Sowinski at 567-242-0464 or on Twitter @Lima_Sowinski.