Judge to decide whether to bar statements from hit-and-run case

jsowell@idahostatesman.comJuly 10, 2014 

Alex Cole Thackery

The attorney representing Alex Cole Thackery asked a judge Thursday to bar the prosecution from using statements Thackery made to police after allegedly striking a bicyclist, leaving the scene and then returning.

Attorney Annie McDevitt argued that Thackery did not voluntarily waive his Miranda rights before Boise police officers questioned him.

Prosecutor Tamara Kelly said the officers were polite and acted professionally toward Thackery and did nothing wrong.

Fourth District Ada County Judge Melissa Moody took the motion under advisement, following a two-hour hearing.

Thackery allegedly ran a red light at 7:05 a.m. on Oct. 17 and struck a woman riding her bicycle through the intersection at Eighth and Myrtle streets. The bicyclist, who was never publicly identified, suffered a laceration to her head and an injury to her wrist and was knocked unconscious.

Thackery, who had been heading to Boise State University, continued driving but later parked and returned to the scene of the wreck. At 7:46 a.m., he called 911 and reported to a dispatcher that he had struck a bicyclist.

He is charged with felony leaving the scene of an accident resulting in injury and misdemeanor careless or inattentive driving.

Boise police Cpl. Scott McMikle informed Thackery of his Miranda rights, that he did not have to answer questions and that if he chose to he could have an attorney present. McMikle asked Thackery if he wished to give up his right to speak with an attorney and to have one present during questioning.

"I don't know," Thackery answered, McMikle said in court Thursday.

"You don't know?" McMikle asked.

"No," Thackery responded.

Kelly said McMikle and Cpl. Lance Nickerson, who separately questioned Thackery for seven or eight minutes each, asked questions to verify what was going on.

The defense claims the two officers told Thackery about the bicyclist's injuries and then got Thackery to repeat that information back to them. The officers testified they told Thackery about the injuries to relieve his mind that she might have been seriously injured.

Psychologist Craig Beavers testified that Thackery was susceptible to repeating back suggestions and did not fully understand his right to an attorney before questioning. He said he did not believe Thackery gave a voluntary waiver of his Miranda rights.

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