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Convicted Killer Scott Peterson Spared Death Penalty By California Supreme Court

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Citing impermissible trial court errors made during the jury selection process, the California state Supreme Court has just thrown out the death sentence of Scott Peterson, one of the greatest tabloid villains of the 2000s.

Peterson was convicted and then sentenced to death in 2004 for the  killing of his  his eight-months-pregnant wife, Laci, 27, in their Modesto home on Christmas Eve 2002. He was also convicted of murdering their unborn son, Conner.

Their remains washed ashore in Richmond four months later near an area where Peterson said he had gone fishing. He has maintained his innocence.

According to Bloomberg, the trial court erroneously dismissed prospective jurors because of written questionnaire responses expressing opposition to the death penalty, “even though the jurors gave no indication that their views would prevent them from following the law—and, indeed, specifically attested in their questionnaire responses that they would have no such difficulty,” wrote Justice Leondra R. Kruger in the unanimous (7-0) decision to toss the sentence.

Under US Supreme Court precedent, the court said, the errors require reversing the death sentence. However, the state may choose to retry the penalty phase of the trial on remand if prosecutors so wish.


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