Second trial for man accused of shooting cop declared a mistrial

Kristen Johanson
September 12, 2019 - 2:40 pm
In 2015, then 33-year-old Eric Torres was sentenced to 66 to 132 years in prison in connection to a shooting that left Philadelphia Police Officer Edward Davies in a medically induced coma and nerve damage.

Philadelphia Police Department

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UPDATED: 4:50 p.m.

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — A city judge has declared a mistrial in the second trial of a man accused of shooting a Philadelphia police officer six years ago.

Defense attorneys for Eric Torres asked Judge Charles Ehrlich for the mistrial because, they argued, city prosecutors purposely showed a silver handgun found inside the defendant’s home to a jury. That evidence was ruled inadmissible by the Pennsylvania Superior Court during the first trial because the judge said the officers didn’t have probable cause to go into Torres' home.

Torres, now 37, was originally charged for shooting Officer Edward Davies in the stomach during a struggle in 2013.

He was convicted in 2015 of aggravated assault, assault on law enforcement, as well as other drug and gun charges. But the higher court tossed that conviction due to the lack of probable cause to search his home.

Related: Prosecutors argue man purposely shot cop 6 years ago; defense calls cops 'out of control'

Prosecutors say showing the gun as evidence on Thursday was an honest mistake, to which the judge agreed. The defense disagreed, saying it was intentional.

Davies admitted he's disappointed.

"I am still hurting," he said. "I still have nerve damage from the waist down. I am scarred still from the (tracheostomy) in my neck, all the way down to my feet — I am scarred up. Every day I have to look down and see a reminder of what happened that day."

But after being in a coma for three weeks, and going through countless surgeries and rehab stints, the 12-year veteran is back working as an instructor for the police academy.

Although defense attorneys wanted the judge to toss the entire case altogether on Thursday, the judge said "mistakes happen" and no one was intentionally trying to do the wrong thing.

Torres' third trial is now set for late October.

"I am tired of reliving this nightmare every day. I just want this behind us," Davies added. "I will just have to wait until October and start all over again."

The Philadelphia District Attorney's Office declined to comment about what happened in court, and said only: "We look forward to presenting our case against the defendant next month and securing justice of Officer Edward Davies, who continues to heal from his gunshot injuries."