EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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March 27, 2013

Local man held without bail, charged in home invasion

HAVERHILL — The lawyer for a Haverhill man claims that his client was home at the time police allege he took part in a masked home invasion in Lawrence. The lawyer says the only evidence presented by witnesses was that they claimed to have recognized his voice and that the evidence against his client is scant.

Todd Muir, 27, of 12 Blaisdell St., Apt. 2, Haverhill, was ordered held without bail March 19 by Lawrence District Court Judge Kevin Gaffney, who determined he was a danger to society. Muir was previously held without bail at his arraignment March 11 on charges of home invasion, assault with a dangerous weapon and carrying a firearm without a license.

Muir is charged with taking part in a March 8 home invasion on Melrose Street in Lawrence. The victims told police they were able to identify him as one of the two masked intruders who robbed them of $4,000 in cash after recognizing his voice as a family acquaintance who visited their house frequently. Police requested that The Eagle-Tribune not release the victims’ names for their protection. Police subsequently obtained an arrest warrant for Muir, 27, who was arrested later at his Haverhill apartment by state and Haverhill police.

At Muir’s dangerousness hearing last week, his defense lawyer, Thomas Torrisi of Methuen argued for Muir to be released pending his next court appearance, while Assistant District Attorney Kelleen Forlizzi argued for Muir to be held without bail as a danger to society.

Torrisi said Muir’s alleged victim and two teenage girls who were in the house at the of the home invasion testified at the request of the state. Torrisi said he called Officer Angel Lopez as a witness.

“There was a significant amount of inconsistencies in the testimony, which I felt was sufficient to cast some doubt on whether it was Mr. Muir who committed this crime,” Torrisi said. “This was a voice identification only.”

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