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Lawrence and Douglas County

Lawrence and Douglas county

Judge orders new trial in sexual battery case

July 29, 2011

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A Douglas County judge has ordered a 28-year-old man who has served five years in prison for a sexual battery conviction should get a new trial based on new evidence in the case.

According to court records, District Judge Robert Fairchild granted Jason Ellison’s motion for a new trial last week after he heard evidence at a hearing last week and earlier this month.

A jury in November 2006 convicted Ellison of aggravated sexual battery and acquitted him of attempted aggravated criminal sodomy after a sister of Ellison’s former girlfriend in July 2006 accused him of attempting to molest her twice in Lawrence. Fairchild sentenced Ellison to serve 22 years in prison based on his criminal history. A Kansas Court of Appeals panel earlier upheld the conviction.

But Ellison and his attorney, Napoleon Crews, argued that several people since the trial said they heard the woman say her allegations about him were not true. The allegations from the witnesses came as part of an investigation by student interns at the Kansas University School of Law’s Paul E. Wilson Project for Innocence and Post-Conviction Remedies.

Douglas County prosecutors had argued the witnesses Ellison was relying on were biased and that the evidence did not meet the legal standard for a new trial.

District Attorney Charles Branson said Friday his office would review Fairchild's decision, attempt to meet with the victim and then decide on a course of action.

Comments

rukidingme 3 years, 5 months ago

I been following this case, DG county attorney needs to dismiss this case and hope Mr. Ellison doesn't sue the county for being put in prison for nothing. Sounds like the county should have done better job of investigating the complainant before filing charges.Mr. Ellison I wish you luck and hope that if case is dismissed you sue the heck out of Douglas County and the state of Kansas for taking five years of your life away.

kscityrobber 3 years, 5 months ago

If it wasn't convincing evedince, trust that the judge wouldn't of ordered new trial. To many people in jail for wrongfully convicted of sex crimes. All it takes is a upset woman to say he did it. No for those that do commit these crimes. They should be locked up for ever and a day. Unfortunatly if it does get overturned. He will then just be considered a scumbag sex offender that just got lucky. There needs to be severe punishment for people that wrongfully accuse people of these crimes. Like maybe giving her the 22 years he got.

HawkTalker 3 years, 4 months ago

Pywacket,

Way to jump right on the bandwagon for the victims'. The students that work in this program do so for class credit only. I know for a fact that the student that did the work on this case went above and beyond his normal duties and personal safety to make this happen. There is a solid case here. And they do not see themselves as crusading heroes.

It isn't easy to get a new trial in a case like this. Once convicted, the presumption becomes guilty until proven innocent. I have faith that the system worked here, and will work in the new trial. Kudos to the students and staff at the Project for their continued hard work.

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