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Pair didn't have contact with fugitive Morris, attorney says

TAMPA — An attorney for Dwayne Callaway and Alaina Riggins said Sunday that despite his clients' relationships with the man accused of killing two police officers, neither had any communication with Dontae Morris while he was on the run.

Riggins, whose mother is Morris' aunt, and Callaway, who is Morris' brother, were arrested on drug and gun charges at a motel the same night Morris was taken into custody at a law office.

"As far as I know, not any of the family members had any contact with Morris," said their attorney, James Mancuso.

Neither Callaway nor Riggins has been charged with aiding Morris, who escaped capture for nearly four days after the June 29 murder of two Tampa officers during a traffic stop in east Tampa.

However, Callaway's arrest report notes that police identified him as "providing refuge." Riggins' mother, who is a civilian employee at the Tampa Police Department, has been suspended for not disclosing her daughter's close friendships with Morris and Callaway — both of whom police were searching for at the time.

While Riggins was released from jail on $10,000 bail just hours after her arrest, Callaway remained in jail Sunday after a judge ordered no bail for the charges, which would be a violation of his probation.

Mancuso said he doesn't expect any further charges for Riggins or Callaway.

During a bond hearing set for today, Mancuso said he will try to get a judge to set bail for Callaway so he can be released.

A personnel hearing is expected this week for Riggins' mother, Carolyn Riggins, the longtime Tampa police employee who was suspended without pay last week.

Police Chief Jane Castor has said Carolyn Riggins would face termination "if she was aware that her daughter was in contact with Dontae Morris." Otherwise, she could be reinstated.

Mancuso says there is no proof that mother or daughter had any knowledge of Morris' whereabouts.

"I have not seen anything to indicate that either one of them knew where Dontae Morris was when he was a fugitive" or that they were in contact with him, Mancuso said.

Morris has been charged with four murders — the killings of Officers David Curtis and Jeffrey Kocab, as well as those of Derek Anderson in east Tampa and Harold Wright in Palm River that authorities have described as robberies.

Shelley Rossetter can be reached at (813) 226-3374 or srossetter@sptimes.com.

Pair didn't have contact with fugitive Morris, attorney says 07/11/10 [Last modified: Sunday, July 11, 2010 10:54pm]
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