Tuesday, September 02, 2008, 12:48 PM

COA Frees Man Convicted of Kidnapping, Burglary, Etc.

In a case today involving the constitutional right to a speedy trial, the Court of Appeals tossed out the conviction of a man sentenced to more than 60 years in prison--for kidnapping, burglary, assault and battery, robbery with a dangerous weapon, and attempted first-degree sex offense, among other charges--holding that the State unfairly delayed his trial (for about five years). "Given the length of the delay, defendant's repeated efforts to expedite his trial, the overwhelming evidence that the delay could have been avoided if the State had exercised even the slightest care during the course of this prosecution, and the fact that this delay actually prejudiced defendant at trial," the Court ruled against the State, vacating the convictions and dismissing all charges with prejudice. A story from the N&O is here. (And for those who are curious, the panel couldn't plausibly be characterized as a liberal one: Judges McCullough, Tyson, and Stroud presided.)

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