Video: Mother didn't believe suspect assaulted baby
The mother of an infant who died on Feb. 7 didn't believe in the hours afterward that the suspect assaulted the boy, according to a police video shown Monday in Olmsted County District Court.
The interrogation room video showed the Rochester man charged with second-degree unintentional murder, Michael Roy Smith, talking with the infant's mother, Lisa Hoyer, after they had been questioned separately by police investigators.
"They don't have proof," Hoyer told Smith. "Just because you were the last one in the bedroom doesn't mean (expletive)."
The couple held hands across a table for much of the conversation, and at one point Smith kissed Hoyer on the cheek. The video was shown as part of a pre-trial attempt by Smith's attorneys to suppress statements Smith made to police in the hours after four-month-old Aiden Hoyer's death.
According to the complaint, Smith allegedly shook the infant in addition to throwing the child down and placing a pillow over his face in an attempt to get the boy to stop crying. Hoyer was in another room at the time Smith was trying to quiet the baby.
The death was reported to police at 12:45 a.m.; the video shown in court Monday was taken about five hours later.
Police said there was blood in the crib, Hoyer told Smith, but she said it came from the baby's diaper rash.
"I can't convince them — they're not listening to me," Hoyer told Smith. "I don't think he (Aiden) was abused, that's for sure."
She added: "I'm thinking maybe you rolled over while you were sleeping and he couldn't breathe."
In another clip shown Monday, Smith said, "Call me a lawyer now! Now," when he was brought back into the interrogation room by police after his conversation with Hoyer. That was at 5:48 a.m.
Around 50 minutes later, police investigator Eric Boynton told Smith that "we're just going to hang onto you until the autopsy is complete." He then read Smith the Miranda warning and said he wanted to give Smith the chance to tell his side of the story.
"I'm just going to say that whatever I have done was not intentional," Smith said.
Smith later added: "I didn't do anything out of the ordinary. I was playful with him."
The hearing ran beyond its allotted time Monday. It will be continued on Dec. 22.
The scope of the almost five hours of interrogation room video that will be closely examined in court seemed to expand Monday.
Defense attorney Pam King asserted that police started a "custodial interrogation" of Smith long before Smith was told he wasn't free to leave the Rochester police station and read the Miranda warning.
In making that argument, King expanded the time period in the police interrogation that the defense will seek to suppress by up to three hours.