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The Jessica Lunsford tragedy

Saying judge erred, defense seeks retrial for Couey

By JOHN FRANK
Published March 22, 2007


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INVERNESS - Defense attorneys for John Couey are asking for a new trial.

In a new motion, the Public Defender's Office says prosecutorial misconduct contributed to Couey not receiving a fair and impartial trial.

Couey was found guilty by a Miami jury earlier this month for burglary, kidnapping, rape and murder in the death of Jessica Lunsford. Days later, jurors recommended a death sentence.

Couey's attorneys argue a number of points where they say the judge erred, such as wrongly denying defense challenges of jurors in the jury selection process and refusing to grant the defense additional peremptory challenges.

Defense attorneys said the verdict was contrary to the law and evidence and is against the weight of evidence.

The filing is a perfunctory step in the appeals process of a capital case.

The motion could be heard this morning, during a previously scheduled status conference in Inverness.

[Last modified March 22, 2007, 06:29:51]


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