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Archive for Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Miller appeals murder conviction to state Supreme Court

April 18, 2007

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— Martin Miller, a Lawrence man sentenced to life in prison for killing his wife, wants to be given a new trial in hopes of reversing his conviction.

Miller's appeal will be heard April 25 by the Kansas Supreme Court.

Miller, a carpenter and former Christian school teacher, was convicted of first-degree murder in the 2004 strangulation of his wife, Mary Miller, who had been a Kansas University librarian.

He was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for 25 years.

Miller, who denied killing his wife, has appealed the conviction, saying trial jurors were unfairly prejudiced against him.

Prosecutors presented evidence of Miller pursuing sexual relationships with other women and of pornographic photos found on his computer.

"The photographs served no purpose other than to inflame the passions of the jury against Mr. Miller," attorney Sarah Ellen Johnson wrote in her legal brief to the court.

In addition, Douglas County District Judge Paula Martin erred by allowing hearsay testimony by Laura Cuthbertson about Miller's relationships with other women, Johnson wrote. Miller, while in prison, married Cuthbertson last year.

Johnson also argues Miller was wronged when prosecutors referred to him as "the killer" in closing arguments.

But attorneys for the Douglas County District Attorney's Office said Miller's defense attorney had conceded earlier that introduction during the trial of a few representative photographs would not be objectionable.

Evidence concerning extramarital affairs was necessary to support the state's theory of motive, and prosecutors didn't improperly disparage Miller in closing arguments, they argued.

Comments

HappyFace 6 years, 11 months ago

I don't think the Marty was a teacher at the Christian school........I think he was an administrator or something. Either way........he was spiritually misguided.

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