PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The Maine supreme court on Tuesday overturned the conviction of a man in the machete killing of his neighbor in 2016.
The Supreme Judicial Court ruled unanimously that Bruce Akers’ rights were violated by police and that a judge should have suppressed evidence and statements gathered by officers.
Akers, of Limington, was sentenced to 38 years in prison for killing the victim after an argument about alleged stolen alcohol in June 2016.
Douglas Flint, 55, was reported missing before police searched Akers’ property. Investigators later found Flint’s body hidden under a pile of rotting deer carcasses and debris.
The supreme court said officers conducted an unlawful search of Akers’ home without a warrant. The court said the state failed to demonstrate that Akers’ self-incriminating statements made to police after being roused from sleep were made voluntarily.
The statements were used to obtain a search warrant that led to the discovery of Flint’s body.
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