In a stunning reversal, the Connecticut Supreme Court has ordered a new trial for a Kennedy cousin convicted for a murder more than 40 years ago.
A 4-3 decision by the court vacated the earlier conviction of Michael Skakel, who was convicted for the 1975 murder of Martha Moxley, according to Fox News.
Skakel, a nephew of Ethel Kennedy, who was married to Robert F. Kennedy, was found guilty in 2002 of bludgeoning Moxley to death with a golf club in 1975 in Greenwich, Conn., while the two were teenagers. Sentenced to a 20-year-to-life prison term, Skakel was released on bail after a lower court decided to overturn his conviction in 2013.
Writing for the majority on Friday’s decision, Justice Richard Palmer said that Michael Sherman, Skakel’s his trial attorney, did not get alibi testimony from a witness, Denis Ossorio.
“Without Ossorio’s testimony, the state was able to attack the petitioner’s (Skakel’s) abili – a complete alibi for the time period during which it is highly likely that the victim was murdered – as part of a Skakel family conspiracy to cover up the petitioner’s involvement in the victim’s murder,” Palmer wrote.
“It is really the case that will not end,” Fox News’ Ed Henry reported on ” The Story With Martha MacCallum” on Friday, explaining that Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has taken the case up as a cause, authoring a book alleging that the police botched the investigation.
The state Supreme Court overturned the lower court’s order for a new trial, reinstating Skakel’s conviction in 2016. Now that same high court has overturned its previous ruling stating Skakel had faced bias because his attorney had not shown the court evidence of a possible alibi.
Henry explained that there have been several other potential suspects, including Skakel’s brother and a live-in tutor who could have committed the murder while Skakel was watching television.
“Now prosecutors have to decide if do want to try it again,” Henry told MacCallum. “Basically the high court is saying it should be tried again but prosecutor simply say after all of this time, that they do not want to go through this yet again. So they have a decision to make.”
“You look at all of the people who were involved, somebody knows who did this,” MacCallum said. “The neighbors, the friends. People have a million theories on what happened. Many people have always believed for many years that Michael Skakel did it.”
“But it is chilling, because you know that somebody knows what happened to her in her garage,” she added.
“They still not have gotten justice or any sense of closure,” Henry said.
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