Last week, a New London jury listened to the recorded interrogation of accused murderer Dashawn Revels conducted two years ago by city police detective Richard E. Curcuro and two of his colleagues.
Many police departments are using audio and video to record interviews. Portions of interrogations are played often at trials, but local court observers say it is unusual that the Revels jury heard the entire audio recording.
In many ways, this was a classic police interview, though maybe not the type you read about in detective novels and see on television crime shows.
The suspect waived his right to remain silent and agreed to talk to the cops. (Defense attorneys out there are already groaning.)
The detectives established a rapport by asking Revels about girls and baseball and any number of topics not related to the case. When they did steer the conversation to that night’s shooting near the Crystal Avenue high rise, they were still in “good cop” mode. They told Revels he could help himself by telling them the truth. Revels denied involvement repeatedly, and the first part of the interrogation concluded.
A couple of hours later, Curcuro was more confrontational when he retrieved Revels from his holding cell and turned on the recorder for another round of questioning.
“You’re a liar,” he told Revels as he showed him surveillance photos that put him near the crime scene.
Curcuro cursed and told Revels, “We know everything.” Still, the detective insisted the most important thing Revels could do was to tell the truth. (Defense attorneys would tell you that statement was as far from the truth as Earth is from the International Space Station.)
Revels changed his story. He admitted he was on Crystal Avenue with a group of friends that night, checking on the girlfriend of an incarcerated friend. He said words were exchanged and the victim, Bryan Davila, started shooting first. Though the state contends Revels said, “I” did the shooting, the defense says Revels said, “We” did the shooting.
The recording is unclear, so it will be up to the jury to decide whose version they believe.