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Teenager accused of shooting St. Petersburg Police officer to face trial in two months

LARGO — All signs point toward a March 19 trial for the teenager accused of murdering St. Petersburg Police officer David S. Crawford nearly a year ago.

At a pretrial hearing on Thursday for Nicholas Lindsey, defense attorneys Dyril Flanagan and Frank McDermott said they are proceeding with plans to conduct depositions, evaluate cell phone evidence and have Lindsey evaluated by a mental health expert.

Assistant State Attorney James Hellickson expressed concern that it had taken some time to schedule the mental health evaluation, and asked for another hearing to make sure everything was staying on schedule. The attorneys and Lindsey are scheduled to return to court Feb. 16.

But there was no suggestion that either side will ask for extra time before the scheduled March 19 trial date.

Police say last Feb. 21, Lindsey encountered Crawford as the officer investigated a complaint about a suspicious person. Lindsey is accused of pulling out a semiautomatic weapon and shooting four times.

The weapon has not been found.

Lindsey was picked up the next day and confessed to the shooting, according to a videotaped statement. His attorneys unsuccessfully argued the confession should not be used in the trial.

Lindsey, who turns 17 next month, is being tried as an adult. If convicted of first-degree murder, he would be sentenced to life in prison. Prosecutors cannot seek the death penalty because of his age.