MOULTON, Ala. (WHNT) - An attorney representing an accused killer says there are at least two sides to every story, and he says so far, only one side is being told. Michael Terry sat down and spoke with us today about Jose Manuel Martinez, currently jailed in Moulton. Authorities say Martinez may be responsible for as many as 30 unsolved homicides.
"And that's one of the reasons I consented to do this interview is to maybe get the other side of the story out there as well." Moulton attorney Michael Terry tells WHNT News 19. He says he'll limit the focus of his efforts in the defense of Jose Martinez to the crime in Lawrence County that Martinez is charged with.
"But obviously I'm only concerned with one allegation and one allegation only, and that's the one here in Lawrence County," Terry said.
Martinez is charged with the March 4th shooting death of Jose Ruiz of Decatur. His bullet-riddled body was found just off an isolated roadway near the Bankhead National Forrest. But during questioning after his arrest, investigators say Martinez not only confessed to that crime, but also told them he had killed upwards of 30 people over the years as a contract hitman for several Mexican drug cartels.
Sheriff Gene Mitchell says investigators from Florida and California have questioned Martinez since his arrest and have cleared a total of 13 different killings thus far, including two in Florida and ten more in California. Terry had his first meeting with Martinez at the jail Friday afternoon but declined to reveal what Martinez might have said to him.
"Any other cases in any other jurisdiction would have nothing to do with this case, assuming that those cases exist," Terry says. He adds as with any other defendant, he will work under the presumption that Martinez is innocent until proven otherwise.
A preliminary hearing for Martinez will be scheduled later this summer. Martinez will be held without bond at least until that time.