Cape & Islands District Attorney Michael D. O’Keefe announced today that the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court has affirmed the first degree murder conviction of Charles Robinson (d.o.b. 5/11/1974) for the 2000 killing of 24 year old Eddie Figueroa.
On the evening of February 24, 2000, Figueroa’s girlfriend overheard Robinson “berating” Figueroa for failing to get his car on the road. She left their home in Dennisport, and returned to find Figueroa’s body on the living room floor. He was lying on his back, with multiple gunshot wounds from a close range to his head, torso, arms, and hands. Police conducted an investigation, and the defendant’s cell site location information was consistent with him leaving Dennisport and heading home. The defendant also told his girlfriend that evening that he was home at 8 P.M., however, she could not remember what time he was home. Further, prior to trial, the defendant threatened to murder a cellmate. The cellmate responded that the defendant was not going to kill him because the defendant did not have a gun, the defendant said, "That's what the other guy thought."
On August 21, 2000 a Barnstable Superior Court jury found Charles Robinson guilty of first degree murder and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon. The Honorable Gerald O’Neill sentenced Robinson to life without parole at MCI Cedar Junction.
On appeal, Robinson alleged a new trial was warranted due to insufficient evidence that he committed the murder, and claimed error in exclusion of a juror voir dire and colloquy. The defendant claimed prior bad acts were introduced at trial, and asserted that the Commonwealth’s closing argument argued facts not in evidence.
The Supreme Judicial Court rejected all of Robinson’s challenges, finding the evidence was sufficient, the judge exercised sound discretion with the jury, the prior bad acts went to the defendant’s motive to kill Figueroa, and the Commonwealth’s closing argument was permissible.
The case was investigated by Dennis Police and State Police detectives assigned to the District Attorney’s Office. The case was prosecuted by District Attorney Michael O’Keefe. The appeal was briefed and argued by Chief of Appeals Elizabeth A. Sweeney.