The retrial of Alex Ewing in a virtually 40-year-previous Lakewood homicide state of affairs bought underway Wednesday with a standard opening assertion from the prosecution and requests by the protection for a second mistrial and, after that unsuccessful, a rework of venue.
District Select Tamara Russell rejected that, method too, proper after testimony started within the 2nd Jefferson County trial of Ewing, who’s accused of the homicide and sexual assault of Patricia Smith on Jan. 10, 1984, throughout a string of brutal assaults in extra of a 12-working day span by the so-known as “Hammer Killer.”
An Arapahoe County jury previous summer season season convicted Ewing of murdering a number of associates of an Aurora family in the course of individuals assaults, and his October demo on costs he killed Smith resulted in a mistrial when his attorneys requested for his or her shopper’s psychological competency be evaluated. That psychological well being and health delay was settled late previous calendar 12 months, in accordance to court docket data.
For the second demo, Chief Deputy District Legal professional Katharine Decker caught to a equal argument, emphasizing the significance of “semen and similarities” in her opening assertion Wednesday. She focused on the DNA proof connecting Ewing to semen found on Smith’s human physique and in her residing dwelling.
The DNA was matched to Ewing whereas he was serving a 40-year sentence in Nevada for tried homicide quickly after beating a pair with an ax deal with in August 1984.
“After nearly 40 a long time, they’ve a match,” Decker instructed the jury.
Decker additionally used sizeable parts of her opening assertion reviewing the murders of Melissa, Debra and Bruce Bennett in Aurora on Jan. 16, 1984, for which Ewing was sentenced to 3 existence phrases, drawing similarities involving the Bennett and Smith circumstances.
Each equally assaults took spot at households precisely the place storage doorways skilled been nonetheless left open up and each equally Melissa Bennett and Smith had been killed with hammer blows to the top, then sexually assaulted.
The protection argued that while the semen DNA could maybe have been matched to Ewing, the so-named contact DNA from “important objects” within the case excluded Ewing as a suspect. The DNA uncovered on the care for of the hammer that killed Smith, as correctly because the proof on her garments, didn’t match Ewing, group defender Katherine Powers Spengler reported.
She contended that the prosecution was ignoring this proof to realize “a speedy, easy repair.”
“The prosecution needs you to imagine it is a uncomplicated circumstance,” Spengler said, arguing that the purpose out was asking jurors to miss bodily proof that she mentioned dominated Ewing out.
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Spengler concluded the opening assertion by calling on the jury to not have a “cemented ideas of a quick repair” just like the prosecution.
“There is no such thing as a challenge that this case signifies the tragic decline of Patricia Smith,” Spengler claimed, arguing that the perpetrator should be held accountable — depending on the DNA on the take care of of the hammer.
“And that DNA, that’s not Alex Ewing’s DNA,” she defined.
The prosecutor, whereas, noticed that the deficiency of Ewing’s DNA on the hammer doesn’t counsel he didn’t use it: He may have been carrying gloves.
Previous to the opening statements, Ewing’s protection questioned for a mistrial due to to statements produced by dismissed potential jurors, which the safety defined may have established bias among the many panel. The determine denied the movement for mistrial and continued with jury choice
The safety later filed a motion requesting a rework of venue, arguing Ewing wouldn’t be ready to get a truthful trial in Jefferson County — however the decide denied that, method too.
The to begin with witness to testify for the purpose out was Chery Lettin, who in depth the sensible expertise of discovering her mom on the working day she was killed of their family.
Ewing’s demo is anticipated to remaining two to a couple months.
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