Updated:SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. —
The murder trial of a member of the Warlocks motorcycle gang began Monday.
The lawyer for the man accused in a deadly Seminole County shootout dropped a bombshell about a shooting involving a witness. He said that one of his witnesses was shot over the weekend, and if the violence continues it could mean a mistrial.
David Maloney, a member of the Warlocks chapter in Philadelphia, is accused of shooting and killing three members of the rival Orlando Warlocks at a charity event in September of 2012.
Maloney, Paul Smith, Robert Eckert and Victor Amaro are all charged with second-degree homicide and attempted homicide.
The shootings happened during a fundraiser at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post in Winter Springs.
At the time of the incident, police said members of the Philadelphia Warlocks MC were holding a fundraiser at the VFW when members of the Orlando club showed up. They said six motorcyclists opened fire.
Over the weekend a witness in the case was shot and injured.
According to an arrest report, Warlock gang member, John Haskell, is accused of shooting defense witness Larry Spohn while he was riding his motorcycle along Interstate 95 in Brevard County on Saturday.
Spohn was shot in the arm.
Haskell was pulled over in his car moments later and arrested on charges of attempted premeditated murder, the report said.
In court defense attorney Michael Lafay said he believes the shooting was an effort to intimidate a witness in the case.
"If these harassments, threats and acts of physical violence continue against Mr. Maloney's witnesses, it is going…it's going to affect his ability to procure and get the attendance of witnesses for his defense in this trial, and ultimately, If I can't get witnesses here for his defense, I'll be moving for mistrial; for a mistrial because his constitutional rights are being violated," Lafay said.
Lafay said the threats and violence against his witnesses could jeopardize the case.
"I can say I have been a trial attorney for approximately 27 years and this is on the outer fringe," said Lafay.
Judge Marlene Alva warned both sides about the threats and violence.
"You may want to spread the word that any actions of these types certainly are a disservice to the victims and they are a disservice to Mr. Maloney," Alva said.
Alva told those involved in the case that if there are any safety concerns to tell her or the deputies right away.
Lafay said there have been a number of threats in the case, but most of them have been anonymous so it is difficult to prove who is behind them.