Skip to comments.Richard Baumgartner fallout: Judge grants new trial for man convicted of killing toddler
Posted on 04/11/2012 5:51:58 PM PDT by SmithL
KNOXVILLE A judge today granted a new trial for a man convicted of killing a toddler.
In the continuing fallout over former Knox County Criminal Court Judge Richard Baumgartner's pill addiction and resulting crimes, Paul Jerome Johnson Jr. will be retried in the July 2008 beating and strangulation of 18-month-old Joseph De'Jon Manning.
Johnson was convicted in a July 2010 trial presided over by Baumgartner. However, Baumgartner resigned before ruling on Johnson's motion for a new trial. Such motions are routinely filed after trials and generally denied, paving the way for appeal.
Special Judge Jon Kerry Blackwood ruled today that he could not take Baumgartner's place as the so-called 13th juror in Johnson's motion for new trial because he could not, from transcripts alone, weigh the credibility of witnesses and decide if the jury's verdict was correct.
"I've spent night after night after night trying to find some way to come to a different conclusion, and I just can't," Blackwood said.
The state likely will appeal.
(Excerpt) Read more at knoxnews.com ...
One of the saddest cases of murdering a child was the one hear in texas where her body was found in the water in a trunk. She was beaten to death by both mother and her boyfriend. While they beat her she told then she loved them. It is heart breaking. What monsters.