CT court reverses murder conviction of Kennedy cousin Michael Skakel

Mother of teen slain in 1975 convinced Skakel is the killer

The Connecticut Supreme Court has vacated Michael Skakel's conviction in a decades-old murder case and ordered a new trial.

The Connecticut Supreme Court on Friday vacated Skakel's murder conviction in the 1975 slaying of Martha Moxley.

Fifteen-year-old Martha Moxley, a popular teenager in Greenwich, Connecticut, was found beaten to death more than four decades ago by someone wielding a golf club.

The case has drawn worldwide attention because of the Kennedy name, Skakel's rich family, numerous theories about who killed Moxley and the brutal way in which she died.

In a 2016 decision, the Supreme Court ruled to reinstate the conviction, disagreeing with the lower-court judge's finding. Her neighbor at the time, Michael Skakel, was later found guilty of murder.

The Kennedy's cousin has remained free since 2013 while the court debated the latest appeal after citing the mistakes the trial lawyer made.

The court determined in its newest decision that Skakel's attorney, Michael Sherman, was ineffective. Several other people, including Skakel's brother Tommy Skakel, have been mentioned as possible killers. The Supreme Court did the right thing in overturning that conviction.

Santos also has said there was no physical evidence or eyewitnesses linking Skakel to the killing. He was sentenced to 20 years to life in prison, but he has been out on bail since 2013, when a lower court called for a new trial.

On Friday, the state Supreme Court reversed its own decision.

Justice Richard Palmer, who composed to almost all decided, mentioned Skakel was biased versus thanks to how his attorney failed to find alibi testimony from witness Denis Ossorio. In 1998, former Los Angeles police detective Mark Fuhrman, known for his role in the O.J. Simpson murder case, wrote a book implicating Skakel.

Moxley's brother, John Moxley, told the AP that he was disappointed with the ruling and that it was too soon to say what the family would want next in the case. However, Connecticut attorney Norm Pattis points out that "the high stakes and the high profile nature of the case make it likely the State will try Mr. Skakel again". The last place Moxley was seen was at the Skakel home to visit the family, which was across the street from her home.



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