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Wife of Nicolas Guaman Questioned

Maria Yupangui, wife of Nicolas Dutan Guaman, took part in a videotaped deposition Wednesday, telling the court her son was "traumatized" by the August 2011 crash that killed motorcyclist Matthew Denice.

WORCESTER — Ordered to appear in Worcester Superior Court, the wife of Nicolas Dutan Guaman said Wednesday she was working Aug. 20, 2011, when prosecutors say her husband

Speaking through a Spanish language interpreter, Maria Yupangui said she was working that afternoon and evening at New England Steak and Seafood restaurant in Mendon. She said she learned of the crash when her sister-in-law called her at 10 p.m.

Under questioning by a state prosecutor, she said she had not seen her husband drinking alcohol that afternoon, before he drove her to work in the family's pickup truck. She said she was not aware of his plans for that evening, but that he was to take care of their then 6-year-old son.

Prosecutors say Guaman was driving the Ford F-150 when it struck Denice, a 23-year-old motorcyclist who had the right of way on Congress Street. Denice died as a result of injuries in the crash, after he was dragged for a quarter-mile, according to police.

Guaman is charged with second-degree murder and several other felony offenses. and said he had secured a neuropsychologist who would testify to that effect. In addition, attorney Peter Ettenberg said, a court-appointed psychologist who examined Guaman on Wednesday also said he had a preliminary finding that Guaman is not competent. "He has no idea how the court system works. He has no idea about an understanding of the charges against him," Ettenberg said.

The issue of the defendant's competency has not yet been determined by the court. The court-appointed psychologist will complete a more extensive examination at Bridgewater State Hospital before turning in a report.

Ettenberg identified the neuropsychologist he hired to evaluate Guaman as Paul Spirs, of Danvers. "He said he gave him a number of tests, and he failed, miserably."

Yupangui, Guaman's wife and the mother of their four children, was the first Guaman family member to be deposed as a witness in the case. State prosecutors also plan to take depositions from the now- 7-year-old son, who was a passenger in the pickup truck, Guaman's brother, his sister-in-law and 9-year-old niece.

The purpose of the depositions is to secure their testimony should the family members not be available at trial, either through deportation from the U.S., or flight, according to prosecutors. A judge ordered the depositions videotaped for future reference, but reserved the right for the trial judge to decide whether portions of the depositions can be withheld as trial testimony.

In questioning Yupangui, Assistant District Attorney Jeffrey Travers solicited responses from her that demonstrated her husband understood basic traffic rules, including to stop for red lights and stop signs, understood how to get to her workplace and back, supported the family through his work as a contractor, and was able to handle money responsibly.

Ettenberg objected to the collection of depositions before the issue of Guaman's competency was addressed, but was overruled by Superior Judge Daniel Wrenn.

Under questioning, Yupangui, 33, was unemotional, stating several times she did not understand the questions being asked. She said she did not know anything of the events of the crash, but stated her son, who was a passenger in the Ford F-150 pickup, was "traumatized" by it.

Under questioning from Ettenberg, she said she did not want her son to have to answer questions about the night. "I asked the social worker if they could not do any questions to my son, because my son was traumatized."

Following the crash, a psychologist went to meet with her son daily, she said. "He suffers a lot. I don't want people asking questions of him, because he's still a child."

Prosecutors had hoped to take the deposition of the son, first, before any other witness, because he was in the truck that night. But Wren ordered that the adult witnesses have the depositions taken first.

The Guaman family members will be ordered to return to court on July 23 for the remainder of the depositions.

The family of Matthew Denice, who attended the hearing, said they do not believe that Guaman is mentally incompetent, and said they were discouraged by this turn in the case.

Michael Maloney, Matthew's stepfather, noted that Guaman had provided for his family for seven years in the U.S. "I have a hard time finding an argument that he's not competent to stand trial."

At one point in the hearing, Travers referred to Matthew Denice by name, drawing a reaction from Yupangui that indicated she didn't know who he was talking about.

A reporter for New England Cable News Network asked Maureen Maloney, Matthew's mother, about this moment: "It's just another stab in the heart," Maloney said, outside the courthouse. "She obviously knows my son's name. To disrespect him like that, is very painful."

Linda Worthy June 28, 2012 at 12:47 AM
Wonder what the Mendon selectmen will do about businesses in their town hiring illegal workers.
Joe Kane June 28, 2012 at 12:40 PM
You're right Linda. Mendon selectmen should be reminded that "Rules are Rules". If it applies here, and I believe it does, the restaurant should be fined. If there are other penalties, then they should be applied as well.
Tippy Doodle June 28, 2012 at 12:42 PM
They should let me ask the questions. He will be deemed competent within 30 seconds, miserable bastahd.
Mark Cain June 28, 2012 at 12:51 PM
This bull happens all the time with people claiming they are insane and can't be tried. Hopefully the courts doctor will straighten things out! The illegal wife's work number for New England seafood restaurant in Mending is 508 473-5079.
VivaLaMigra June 28, 2012 at 01:08 PM
Any devious person can "fail" a mental competency test; it's not hard to behave like a nut job especially with a criminal conviction at stake. BTW, was this test administered in Spanish for the "no habla Inglais!" defendant? And, speaking of "no habla Inglais!" thanks to this article we now know the identity of ANOTHER Metro-West business that hires illegals: New England Steak and Seafood. So, we now know the strategy that Guaman's bottom-feeding attorney...probably paid for with YOUR tax dollars! is going to be: claim that this animal drank so much for so long that he's suffered brain damage! Yes, folks, this is the sort of individual that your "president", Barry Hussein Soetoro, wants to give amnesty to: booze-heads and stone killers!
VivaLaMigra June 28, 2012 at 01:16 PM
Thanks to Mark for posting NE Steak & Seafood's phone number. I suggest that everyone in the Metrowest area call there and tell them you're not going to patronize another outlaw business in MW. Common sense tells you the entire kitchen is staffed by illegals. OH, call your GOVERNOR, the deispicable "Devil" Patrick, and a few of the local state reps; I'm sure they'd love to hold their next FUND RAISER at this restaurant... they LOVE illegal aliens!
Mary MacDonald (Editor) June 28, 2012 at 01:27 PM
The woman who testified Wednesday no longer works at that restaurant, but she did at the time of the Aug. 20, 2011 crash, according to her statements.
southpaw June 28, 2012 at 01:39 PM
being uncooperative and pretending to not know what's going on, does not equal incompetent. The only incompentent person here is Ettenberg. How can he live with himself, knowing the type of scam he is trying to pull.
VivaLaMigra June 28, 2012 at 02:37 PM
OK, this particular illegal doesn't work at NE Steak & Seafood anymore. Does that convince you that the jobs restaurant operators call "the back of the house" kitchen, busboy, dishwasher, etc. aren't heavily staffed with illegals? The so-called "hospitality industry" restaurants, hotels, tourist traps.. wants mass amnesty for illegals. The only problem is, once their current staff is "legal" they won't be able to EXPLOIT them as effectively, so they'll have to import millions MORE illegals "..to do the jobs the old illegals refuse to do..." [at wages and benefits these scum-bag employers want to pay.
VivaLaMigra June 28, 2012 at 02:40 PM
Odds are, the BOS in Medon are turning a blind eye to the problem. In Framingham, it's worse.. they actually passed a 'proclamation' to "welcome" literally EVERYONE...legal or ILLEGAL! Some citizens asked to add the words "legal" and "legally" to the proclamation but that common-sense suggestion was rejected. Go Figure.
SomeoneOrSomething June 28, 2012 at 05:22 PM
while i dont agree with going after someone's family is the form of retaliation... whats noted in this article disgusts me... people need to be held accountable for their actions
Mr Nobody June 28, 2012 at 10:43 PM
These two mental health clinician clowns treat people down on there luck. What is this lawyer up too. When the statement is "Not Competent", there has to be a reason.This clown has been working on top of roofs shingling for a living, for seven years, plus the fringe benefits no taxes taken out of his pay check.
Milfud June 29, 2012 at 01:55 AM
Where in the world am I? I sneak into your country and when I arrive I do not follow any of your laws. I do not register as an alien, I do not get a valid drivers license and I do not register for a work visa. I do expect free social services, I do expect free medical care and I do expect to ignore your laws. These laws apply to you, but not to me. When I commit a crime I do expect free legal help, I do expect free interpreters because I do not speak your language, I do expect free counseling for my children that may have witnessed my illegal behavior and by the way I do expect you to educate my children in your schools while I am here. I expect you to give me everything for free. I have learned the 'ropes' from others before me and I know I have people in your country that will stand up for me in the name of what they think is justice. I know I don't belong here and I know that I have illegally entered your country, but I demand that you meet all of my requirements. Welcome to America. Try this in any other country and let us know the results. Meanwhile, while we struggle to keep our jobs in an economy that is outsourcing to other countries and shrinking in general, we are asked to bankroll people that don't give a damn about us. When the hell did we go blind?
Dorothy Elia June 29, 2012 at 11:27 AM
Go to Sudbury Granite and Marble, there are plenty working there
Mr Nobody July 18, 2012 at 03:38 AM
Hallelujah Milfud
Live and In Color July 18, 2012 at 06:01 AM
Well said
Ralph July 18, 2012 at 10:47 AM
Very Well Put. America... Land of the Free Handout

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