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Badge & Bar: Part of alleged shooters statements to police admissible
Judge allows portion of interview after Miranda rights were read
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More than a minute of recorded statements by the accused shooter at the Atlanta Street Apartments will be inadmissible in court, according to a judge’s order.

Antwan Xavier Earls, 24, is accused by Gainesville Police of shooting at Sheena Mattox, 28, and Angelene Hall, 25, on Aug. 15.

Earls was indicted on Oct. 22 of three counts of aggravated assault, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and other charges.

Earls and his public defender, Travis Williams, filed a motion back on March 16 to suppress the statements Earls made to police.

The investigating officers, according to the order signed by Superior Court Judge Andrew Fuller, heard statements from Earls at Northeast Georgia Medical Center and later at the Gainesville Police Department.

The statements came “while (Earls) was under the admitted influence of cocaine and potentially other drugs,” according to the order.

The initial interview’s first minute and 17 seconds contained incriminating statements made by Earls, according to the order. After this, the investigator explained Earls’ Miranda rights and tried to confirm Earls’ understanding.

“At 2:49 of the audio recording (Earls) is heard saying ‘I would like to speak with y’all now.’ The officer proceeds to question (Earls) and (Earls) is heard responding freely to the questions,” according to the order. “At no point did (Earls) state that he wanted to remain silent, that he did not want to talk with the police, or that he wanted an attorney.”

Fuller found that Earls was not impaired by the drugs during questioning. The judge declared the initial minute and 17 seconds as inadmissible and the rest of the interviews is admissible.

Passenger in fair condition after serious injuries in Sardis Road wreck

A passenger previously in critical condition at Northeast Georgia Medical Center after a May 28 wreck on Sardis Road has been upgraded to a better condition.

Victoria Honeycutt, 23, of Gainesville, was one of five people injured in the wreck on Sardis Road.

A Jeep carrying Honeycutt swerved to avoid a teenager who appeared to be dancing around in the roadway, according to Georgia State Patrol Trooper First Class Jonathan Munger, and struck another vehicle.

According to hospital officials, Honeycutt was in fair condition.

Nick Watson covers public safety issues for The Times. Share your thoughts, news tips and questions with him: