Ferreira Attorney Will Try To Paint Star Witness As a Liar
Jurors hear opening arguments on day one of cold case murder trial.
The attorney for accused murder Michael Ferreira laid out his strategy during opening arguments in Woburn District Court on Tuesday.
Defense Attorney Eric Wilson told jurors that the prosecution's star witness is a liar.
Ferreira, 58, now of Salem, is accused of 1st degree murder in the 1969 death of Tewksbury 15-year-old Johnny McCabe. Prosecutors allege that Ferreira, Walter Shelley and Edward Alan Brown, all Tewksbury High students at the time, kidnapped McCabe as he walked along Main Street, beat him, then drove him to a vacant lot in Lowell where he was bound in such a way that he died from asphyxiation.
Brown, who now lives in Londonderry, is charged with manslaughter in the case. He is the key witness for the prosecution and is expected to testify that Ferreira was the one who actually bound McCabe with a rope around his ankles and neck, leading to his death.
But Wilson plans to argue that Brown's version of the events is a fabrication. He told jurors Brown made up the story while he was under pressure from investigators during an interrogation session, according to an article published on boston.com.
Assistant District Attorney Tom Reilly painted a very different picture during his opening argument. He told jurors Ferreira was cold-blooded and manipulative, and swore Shelley and Brown to secrecy after the killing, according to the boston.com article.
Shelley, who still lives in Tewksbury, Mass., has also been indicted on charges of 1st degree murder. It remains to be seen if he will testify for the prosecution as part of a plea deal.