A prosecution witness at the Arlington murder trial of Richard Lee Earman insisted yesterday he was interviewed by police the same night that Earman's alleged victims were killed, even though their bodies were discovered more than a day after their deaths.
Gary Follin, an attendant at a gas station located at Wilson Boulevard and Randolph Street testified in Circuit Court that he saw Earman in a dark green Mercury Cougar between 3 and 5 a.m. on the morning of May 7, the morning tht Arlington real estate agent Alan Foreman and his fiancee, Donna Shoemaker, were slain. Follin said the car was driven past the station twice, both times traveling at a high rate of speed.
Under cross-examination by defense attorney Jonathan Shapiro, however, Follin said that police interviewed him about the incident only a few hours after he saw the car, which is the same kind of car as one owned by Earman and seized by police shortly after the killings.
The bodies of Foreman and Shoemaker were not discovered until Sunday, May 8, more than 24 hours after Follin said police first questioned him.
Foreman and Shoemaker were found shot to death in the front seat of Foreman's yellow Jaguar, which was parked in the garage of his home at 1201 N. George Mason Dr. in Arlington, not far from the gas station.
While Arlington Commeonwealth's Attorney William S. Burroughs contended on court that Follins "appeared to be confused" by Shapiro's questions about the tuning of when he was interviewed by police, Follin reiterated the same time sequence outside the courtroom after his testimony.
"That just goes to show the quality of the evidence they have against my client," defense attorney John Zwerling said during a break in the trial.
In other testimony, Foreman's nextdoor neighbor, Mary Rinker, said she had heard what "sounded like gunshots" and the sound of breaking glass the night of the killings and testified that she had looked out her upstairs window to see a car speeding away.
However, under cross-examination of Arlington detective Alex Payton, who conducted an automobile lineup for Rinker, it became clear that Rinker said at the time that the car that most clearly resembled the one she saw speeding away from Foreman's house was a Chevrolet Chevelle. "That was close, very close, that was the closest I've seen so far," the detective said the Rinker exclaimed when she saw the Chevelle. [TEXT OMITTED] tr for ad 3 [TEXT OMITTED]
Payton said Rinker told him that a Cougar, which was also driven by the house in the line-up, had the same type of tail lights as the car she saw the night of the murders, but that the Chevelle resembled the car more closely.
Still another witness, Linda Herring, a waitress at Tramps, a Georgetown discotheque, testified that she had seen Earman with Foreman and Shoemaker at the club the night the couple was killed. She said that Earman left Tramps shortly before the couple did, around 2 a.m.