The case of Michiel Oakes, who was convicted in 2010 of murdering dog trainer Mark Stover, will go to the state Court of Appeals after his motion for a retrial was denied in Skagit County Superior Court recently.
His Seattle-based attorneys argued during a hearing he did not have a fair trial because of two closed-court hearings and a juror who tweeted about the trial.
Oakes was convicted in 2010 for the 2009 murder of Stover. During the trial he claimed Stover’s death was self-defense. Oakes was sentenced to 26 1/2 years in prison.
Judge Michael Rickert agreed with the prosecutor that the closed hearings are not adversarial in nature and do not include presentation of evidence.
He said the decisions at the early morning hearings are often made by judges alone in their chambers at other times.
He said jurors were told not to research or discuss the case but they were not told specifically not to tweet.
Rickert said the juror’s tweets did not offer details of the case and the juror didn’t commit any kind of misconduct.
The case will now go to the Court of Appeals.
No comments found.