Judge approves DNA testing for evidence in decades-old murder case


CONVICTED KILLER HAS MAINTAINED HIS INNOCENCE. BUT NOW… “JERRY VERNON )S” MURDER CASE IS GETTING ANOTHER LOOK. A DISTRICT JUDGE IS ALLOWING NEW D- N-A TESTING ON A CRUCIAL PIECE OF EVIDENCE. RACHEL KNAPP SHOWS YOU WHAT COULD SET HIM FREE. CONVICTED KILLER JERRY VERNON )S FUTURE HINGES ON A BEER CAN. IN THE SUMMER OF 19-89, .. THE BUSINESSMAN WAS ACCUSED OF KILLING FELLOW BUSINESSMAN LARRY STEVENS NEAR THE CIBOLA NATIONAL FOREST. A BEER CAN WAS FOUND NEAR THE SCENE. VERNON CLAIMED SELF DEFENSE. NATS POP jail cell door closing BUT WAS CONVICTED AND SENTENCED TO LIFE FOR THE MURDER… NOW, HE HE DIDN )T STAY BEHIND BARS FOR LONG… IN 2001 HE ESCAPED THE PRISON IN LOS LUNAS BY PRETENDING TO BE SICK AND ESCAPING THROUGH A FENCE. “He manipulated those conditions to where he appeared to be more sick than he was so he was placed in a less secure area.” THE ESCAPE SPARKED A NATIONWIDE MANHUNT. BUT VERNON )S RUN DIDN )T END UNTIL TWO YEARS LATER. Gordon Eden, US Marshal “what kept us a little guarded about approaching him was the fact it did not look like the jerry vernon we were all aware of .” HE WAS FOUND HIDING OUT IN HOT SPRINGS, ARKANSAS. he was renting an apartment in the basement belonging to an elderly woman SINCE HE )S BEEN BACK BEHIND BARS VERNON HE )S BEEN FIGHTING TO PROVE HIS INNOCENCE..SOMET HING HE )S CLAIMED ALL ALONG. IN A NEW MOTION FILED, VERNON SAYS HIS PREVIOUS ATTORNEYS DIDN )T DO THEIR DUE DILLIGENCE IN THE TRIAL, THE DOCUMENT ALSO CLAIMS THERE WAS AN IMPROPER RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN ONE OF HIS ATTORNEYS AND THE VICTIM IN THE CASE. THEY ALSO CLAIM THE STATE FAILED TO PRESERVE ALL THE PHYSICAL EVIDENCE PRIOR TO THE TRIAL. AS FOR THE BEER CAN, VERNON )S NEW ATTORNEY HOPES A DNA TEST WILL PROVE MORE ABOUT WHAT HAPPENED THAT NIGHT AND SHOW THE MANY CRACKS PROSECUTORS CASE WHEN IT WAS FIRST TAKEN TO TRIAL. RACHEL KNAPP, KRQE NEWS 13. WE ASKED FOR AN INTERVIEW WITH THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY BUT WE WERE TOLD BASED ON THIS HEARING, PROSECUTORS ARE UNABLE TO COMMENT.

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