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Archive for Friday, February 23, 2007

Identity of late witness linked to Jason Rose mistrial revealed

February 23, 2007

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The identity of the new witness prosecutors tried to introduce before a mistrial was declared in the Jason Rose murder and arson trial is now known.

According to Douglas County District Court records, a Lawrence woman - Emily Ruth Robinson - was served a subpoena on Feb. 10 to appear as a witness, days after the Rose trial got under way.

When she was called by prosecutors on Feb. 12, Rose's defense attorney Ron Evans complained because of the lateness of the request, which led Judge Jack Murphy to declare the mistrial.

District Attorney Charles Branson said Friday that he could not confirm or deny how witnesses were involved in the case because of a gag order Murphy has issued in the case.

Friday morning, Robinson confirmed she received a subpoena on Feb. 10 to appear as a witness in the trial, but she declined to elaborate on her involvement or confirm that she had posted the message on the LJWorld.com the Feb. 9 story.

"I'm not supposed to talk about that," she said.

Rose is accused of setting the Boardwalk Apartments on fire on Oct. 7, 2005, that killed Kansas University student Nicole Bingham, electrician Jose Gonzalez and social worker Yolanda Riddle. Seven others were severely injured.

Prosecutors had said they spent the weekend investigating a new witness after the person came forward late on Feb. 9. The Journal-World also received a subpoena that evening requesting records and Internet protocol addresses for someone who had posted a comment earlier that day alleging Rose had said he would set his apartment on fire.

On Feb. 9, the comment, posted by a user under the name "truth_society," stated that Rose told the poster and several others during his stay in a group home "that as soon as he moved out into his own apartment space, he was going to set it on fire."

Later on Feb. 9, the Journal-World received a subpoena from the Office of the Kansas State Fire Marshal requesting records and Internet protocol addresses for the poster, and the newspaper complied later that night, based on the LJWorld.com user agreement in which the organization reserves the right to disclose identifying information of those posting comments in the event of legal action.

The new trial for Rose is scheduled to begin April 30.

Comments

rjmwx81 7 years, 1 month ago

The guy who started all the other fires was named David Jay. But I think he's in Lansing, not Hutchinson.

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TheGoldenBoy 7 years, 1 month ago

It is my belief that this new witness will be the final nail in Rose's coffin. Personally speaking, I don't think much of people who place the safety of others at risk just so they can get some kind of cheap thrill. I was abused as a child too but that doesn't that I start fires because of it. BTW, does anyone remember the name of the last idiot that we had who started all those fires including the on in Watkins Library? Who knows, maybe Rose will have him for a cellmate at the Hutchinson Hotel!

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