Michael Registe's case appears before Supreme Court of Georgia

Published: Sep. 17, 2012 at 10:18 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 18, 2012 at 9:26 AM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

ATLANTA, GA (WTVM) - On Monday, the case of the man accused of killing two Columbus State University students execution-style in 2007 appeared before the Supreme Court of Georgia.

Michael Registe, the man accused of killing Columbus State University students Randy Newton Jr. and Bryan Kilgore in 2007, was not in court Monday, but his attorney Manny Arora focused on cell phone records and privacy when presenting his arguments before the Supreme Court of Georgia.

"The error exists in this judge because a judge incorrectly found that the fourth amendment was not violated," said Arora.

Arora presented an appeal to a pre-trial ruling by a Muscogee County Court denying a motion to suppress cell phone records from Registe's murder trial. He says he wants the phone records thrown out as evidence because police requested them a day after the murder without any judicial consent and violated his client's reasonable expectation of privacy.

"All they had to do was go get a piece of paper and fax it. Instead they waited however many hours after the murders took place and faxed off a request saying obviously law enforcement is in danger if we approach this dangerous person. That is true in every single criminal case," said Arora.

According to the state, all the phone records obtained by police were done so during an emergency and did not need a subpoena. Attorney Laura Murphree also said it did not violate Registe's reasonable expectation of privacy

"It has long been held in this court that we are talking about cell phone records. We're not talking about content of phone conversations. We're talking about business records that those are the property of the provider, the third party, and not the individual," said Murphree.

Both attorneys had 20 minutes for their arguments and questions from the Justices.

However, a decision was not made Monday. Arora says he expects to see a ruling in a couple of months. He explains a date for a murder trial cannot be set until a ruling for the appeal.

Copyright 2012 WTVM. All rights reserved.