Case involving convicted child killer Jason Reeves being discuss - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Case involving convicted child killer Jason Reeves being discussed in court

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(Source: MGN Online) (Source: MGN Online)

The case involving convicted child killer Jason Reeves is being discussed in 14th Judicial District Court.

Reeves is seeking post conviction relief. He is ultimately seeking a new trial. Prosecutors have objections based on legal representation, the unsealing of records and appeal claims.

Reeves was sentenced to death in late 2004 for the brutal murder of 4-year-old Mary Jean Thigpen, of Moss Bluff.

His execution date had been set last year, however, it has been delayed amid court proceedings.

The state has an issue with how an out of state attorney, contracted by the defense, is being funded.  They say if it's by public funds, it shouldn't be allowed. 

They also have an issue with a number of procedural claims presented by the defense.  Some of those claims including racial discrimination, international law claims and jury instructions.  

That the state says many of those claims are abstract, obscure and new. 

"One of the claims that the defendant made was that he is mentally retarded, which is a new claim and so today the parties discussed various evidence and experts that they have retained and that" Sigler said.

"It is going to be one of the next matters that is going to be addressed, whether or not the defendant is mentally retarded, because the 8th amendment prohibits the execution of mentally retarded individuals" said Sigler. 

Every defendant convicted of a crime has the right to apply for post conviction relief, but as you heard, with capitol cases even more scrutiny is taken. 

As to when we will know if a new trial is granted or not, Sigler says because of the nature of this capital murder case, with constant appeals and requests like what was made on Thursday by the defense, that process will move slower than they would like.  

KPLC asked defense attorney, Kathy Keller, for reaction to today's hearing, she replied, "no comment".

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