SJC Upholds Lynn Man's Murder Conviction
The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court upheld the first degree murder conviction of Spassky Alcequiecz in the 2007 stabbing death of Carlos Mejia of Lynn in a decision released yesterday. Alcequiez was found guilty of murder, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and armed burglary by an Essex Superior Court jury in November 2008 and was sentenced to life in prison without parole. Alcequiez was convicted of murder in the first degree on the felony-murder theory meaning that the killing of Mejia occurred while the defendant was committing a felony, in this case, armed burglary.
During trial, Alcequiez had argued that he killed Mejia in the “heat of passion” because Mejia was with his ex-girlfriend, Amanda Poisson, in the early morning hours of April 20, 2007. Upon learning that Mejia was in Poisson’s home, Alcequiez used a car battery charger pack to break the windows of the door and gained entry. He then struck Poisson in the head with the charger pack multiple times. After seeing Mejia in Poisson’s bedroom, he armed himself with a knife. By this time, Mejia, Poisson, Poisson’s daughter and a housemate had barricaded themselves in a bedroom. Alcequiez was able to get the door partially open and stabbed Mejia, who was holding the door closed, four times. Mejia was taken to Massachusetts General Hospital where he later died.
On appeal, Alcequiez argued that he was provoked by the knowledge of Mejia’s presence in his ex-girlfriend’s home before he had decided to commit armed burglary and therefore the jury should have had the option to consider a manslaughter charge. However, the Court held that provocation cannot “mitigate” or reduce felony-murder to manslaughter.
Alcequiez also argued that his trial attorney was ineffective for failing to argue that the killing of Mejia took place after, not during, the armed burglary and therefore is not a felony murder. The Court ruled that the armed burglary and the killing of Mejia were all “part of a single transaction consisting of an unbroken sequence of event” and therefore constituted felony-murder.
On appeal, the Commonwealth was represented by Essex Assistant District Attorney Kenneth Steinfield and Alcequiez was represented by Attorney Dennis Shedd.