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Prosecutors Ask Kennedy Cousin Skakel Be Sent Back To Jail

A state judge set aside Michael Skakel's murder conviction and ordered his retrial in the 1975 death of Greenwich teenager Martha Moxley.
A state judge set aside Michael Skakel's murder conviction and ordered his retrial in the 1975 death of Greenwich teenager Martha Moxley. Photo Credit: CNN

State prosecutors are asking the Supreme Court to put Kennedy cousin Michael Skakel back behind bars, saying he should not still be free more than a year after the court reinstated his conviction for the murder of Martha Moxley, according to multiple news reports.

A state judge set aside Michael Skakel's murder conviction and ordered his retrial in the 1975 death of Moxley, who was a Greenwich teenager.

Skakel successfully appealed his conviction in October 2013 and was released on bail the next month as he awaited a new trial.

Three years later, the state Supreme Court reversed the ruling that Skakel deserved a new trial. Skakel’s lawyers then filed motions asking the high court to reconsider that decision, and by law Skakel was entitled to remain free until the court issued a final ruling.

State prosecutors, in a filing on Monday, Jan. 29 said motions for reconsideration are typically resolved in a matter of weeks, while Skakel’s motion for reconsideration has been pending since Jan. 6, 2017, according to this report in the Hartford Courant.

Hubert Santos, a lawyer for Skakel, told The Courant it is not up to the parties to dictate the pace of the Supreme Court’s deliberations.

Senior Assistant State’s Attorney James A. Killen wrote: “It is, in fact, taking longer (approaching thirteen months, thus far) for this Court to resolve the narrow issues presented by the petitioner’s motion for reargument than it took the Court to issue a decision on the far more numerous claims raised by the appeal itself (approximately ten months)."

Skakel, a nephew of Ethel Kennedy, was convicted in 2002 in the murder of Moxley 27 years earlier, when they both were teenagers.

Although there was no physical evidence pointing to Skakel, he was charged based on incriminating statements he made to classmates and inconsistencies in his alibi. Skakel was sentenced to 20 years to life before a later court ordered a new trial.

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