Today obstruction of justice charges were filed against Matthew Naquin. This comes after an appeals court determined the defense is not allowed to use the victim’s history of alcohol and drug use as evidence.
“We been working for two years on trying to first get into the phone and secondly look at the data and interpret the data,” District Attorney, Hillar Moore, said.
The former LSU student is said to have deleted hundreds of files from his cell phone after a search warrant was issued for the device.
“There’s an app on the phone was used to delete a lot of evidence from the phone. Unfortunately, because the app is good at what it did. It deleted all of what is called the metadata, so it makes it very difficult to say exactly what was delete,” Moore said.
A state judge called that evidence and said it can be used in the trial.
“We always suspect that there’s some evidence in the phones,” Moore said.
Naquin’s lawyer, John McLindon, says that the messages have nothing to do with the case.
“The allegation that he deleted phone messages really have nothing to do with what happened on the night on September 13th,” McLindon said.
But he says he is hopeful for a fair trial.
“There’s going to be evidence of several boys deleting text messages. So while they might hear about Matthew and allegations that he deleted [text messages], they’re going to hear about several boys deleting too, and I think the jury’s gonna kind of get it saying ‘yea you’re a young kid, you’re scared, you delete some stuff,” McLindon said.
Gruver died September 14th, 2017 of alcohol poisoning after participating in a hazing ritual called Bible study. Prosecutors say multiple witnesses reported Naquin was the main aggressor.
Naquin’s negligent homicide trial is scheduled for Monday. If convicted, he could face up to five years in prison