This is a pretrial motion by defendant for an order striking a state's witness and suppressing any statements made by defendant to that witness.
On September 23, 1984, defendant Terence R. Scales was arrested by the Freehold Borough Police Department and charged with possession of a stolen automobile. Defendant was subsequently charged with murder and other related offenses pertaining to the death of Paul Harris, Jr., which occurred in Mercer County on or about September 21, 1984.
On November 2, 1984, a Mercer County Grand Jury returned Indictment No. 1240-11-84, to which Scales entered a plea of not guilty. On November 7, 1984 the Prosecutor filed a Notice of Aggravating Factors, thereby demanding the death penalty. R. 3:13-4(a).
The defendant has been incarcerated at the Mercer County Detention Center from September 1984 to the present. The trial began on April 7, 1986.
During the trial, on April 14, 1986, Stanley Kathcart, a fellow inmate of defendant, contacted the Mercer County Prosecutor's Office, through his attorney and reported that on the previous night (Sunday, April 13, 1986) defendant had confessed to Kathcart his involvement in the murder of Paul Harris, Jr. Kathcart then gave a formal written statement to the Prosecutor's Office. This new information was communicated by assistant Prosecutor Norris to all parties in court on April 15, 1986 and upon defense counsel's unopposed motion, a mistrial was declared on April 16, 1986.
The information provided by Kathcart is of major significance since it provides the State with its only direct evidence that defendant committed the killing by his own conduct.
The Mercer County Prosecutor's Office has revealed that Kathcart, while incarcerated at the Mercer County Detention Center, worked as an informant for the Detention Center Internal Affairs Division from March 14, 1986 to March 23, 1986. His involvement in two internal investigations resulted in the suspension of one correction officer, and no action against the second due to insufficient evidence.
In addition, Kathcart had previously been an informant/undercover agent for the Special Investigation Unit of the Mercer County Prosecutor's Office from September 1, 1983 through November 30, 1983. As a result of Kathcart's assistance seven persons were arrested and charged with narcotic offenses.
Kathcart also had additional contacts with Mercer County Special Investigative Unit on November ...