Sentencing in Matko murder case could be delayed

By Melissa Correa - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) – Monday afternoon Detavis King is scheduled to sentenced at the Chesterfield County Courthouse, but a motion filed by his attorney this week could push the process so far back, the murder trial could happen all over again.

This motion for a continuance could change everything for 18-year old Detavis King. Just a few months ago he was found guilty of the 2007 murder of 16-year old Ryan Matko. The documents, filed for King's attorney, cite information concerning the prosecution's key witness: Domonique Johnson.

The motion makes several claims: It says Johnson was arrested in 2008 and that during an interview with Chesterfield police…

  • He was told people could "work off" charges by cooperating.
  • That it wasn't revealed Johnson and another witness who also testified against Detavis King previously dated.
  • That in 2009, Johnson was pulled over and arrested again.
  • His passenger told police Johnson admitted that he had recently shot someone.
  • That Johnson's step-father is a Richmond police officer.
  • And that Detavis King's fingerprints didn't match those found on Matko's vehicle.

"The facts that are involved in a case, they belong to everyone," said Steve Benjamin, NBC12 legal analyst.

Benjamin says these types of motions are common. However, the information needs to be examined.

"Just the fact that a witness has a pending charge or received favorable consideration, that's a fact that the jury is entitled to know," Benjamin said.

Monday, the judge will sentence King or issue the continuance. Later he could decide a jury needs to hear a new trial.

"And when they're called upon to make these life or death determinations of credibility, they've got to have all relevant information available to them," he said.

The Commonwealth Attorney's Office says it hasn't read the motion yet, but expects the judge to postpone Detavis King's sentence on Monday.

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