During police interview, Wing mentions murder suspect’s name

Published: May. 31, 2023 at 5:31 PM EDT
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WATERTOWN, New York (WWNY) - When Frederick Wing was interviewed by state police in the murder investigation of Ronald Durham, Wing brought up the name Adam Smith. Smith sits in jail charged with that murder and another one while the murder charge against Wing was dropped.

We have 20 minutes of what was a 6-hour police interview with Wing where Wing’s attorney says his client eventually gave a false confession. But before he does, Wing brings up Adam Smith’s name and explains how Smith knew Durham.

Here’s part of an exchange between the police and Wing:

Investigator: “Who would do something like this?”

Wing: “People owed him money.”

Investigator: “Who owes him money?”

Wing: “Adam Smith.”

Investigator: “Adam Smith? And who is Adam Smith?”

Wing: “He is a constructioner (sic).”

An hour and 20 minutes into Wing’s interview with investigators, he drops Smith’s name. Smith eventually become the murder suspect, but not before Wing was charged with the crime.

Ronald “Huck” Durham was found stabbed to death while visiting his wife’s grave in a Gouverneur cemetery in February. Wing knew Smith had done work for Durham in the past.

Though Wing mentioned the name, it wasn’t until close to 3 weeks later when another man, William Freeman, was murdered that Smith was arrested.

“I think that’s a big miss on behalf of the state police. I’m sure if they had the opportunity to go back in time and take a look at what Freddy shared with them during that initial interview, there’s a possibility that different steps could have been taken, and maybe those steps would have led to the earlier arrest of Adam Smith,” said Ed Narrow, Wing’s lawyer.

St. Lawrence County District Attorney Gary Pasqua confirms state police did interview Smith and others following Durham’s murder, but there just wasn’t any evidence to arrest Smith. And Wing gave state police a confession.

“Mr. Wing indicates that Mr. Smith knows the victim in this case, that they had a relationship, but certainly never goes into any detail or says anything that would lead investigators at that point to think Mr. Smith was involved in any way,” said Pasqua.

Narrow acknowledges state police did what they could with the information they had and thanked the DA for quickly dropping the murder charge against Wing.

Meanwhile, Wing’s family isn’t happy with the way he was treated by police during the 6-hour interview.

On Thursday on 7 News This Evening at 6, we’ll hear what they have to say.