STAMFORD, Conn. -- Michael Skakel’s bid for a new trial was rejected by a Connecticut judge who dismissed his claim there was enough new evidence to warrant a second trial.
Skakel, a cousin of the Kennedy family, was convicted in 2002 of killing 15-year-old neighbor Martha Moxley in 1975 when Skakel was himself a teenager. He was sentenced to 20 years to life in prison.
Superior Court Judge Edward Karazin said in the ruling released Thursday that the supposed new witnesses who have turned up could have been easily found prior to Skakel’s trial. The Advocate newspaper in Stamford, Conn., noted that Skakel’s lawyers had to prove a competent lawyer couldn't have turned up the new evidence before the trial.
The defense had sought a new trial on the grounds that two Bronx teenagers had actually carried out the killing. The claims came from a former acquaintance of Skakel who said in 2003 he had heard the New Yorkers discussing the slaying.
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