Commonwealth v. WilliamsAnnotate this Case
The Supreme Judicial Court reversed the order of the motion judge denying Defendant's Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 278A, 3 motion, holding that Defendant, who claimed that no crime occurred, made a prima facie case for a chapter 278A request.
Defendant pleaded guilty to manslaughter and unlawful possession of a firearm and ammunition. Defendant later filed this motion under chapter 278A alleging that he acted in self-defense. Defendant sought forensic testing of evidence, claiming that the testing would show that the weapon belonged to the victim and that Defendant shot the victim in self-defense. The motion judge denied Defendant's motion. The Supreme Judicial Court reversed, holding that Defendant satisfied the requirement of Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 278A, 3(b)(4) by properly asserting his factual innocence and asserting that the requested testing had the potential to result in evidence that was material to Defendant's identity as the perpetrator of the crime in the underlying case.