Virginia manslaughter conviction overturned because police withheld discovery
Posted on Nov 06, 2006
The Supreme Court of Virginia has held that the failure of police officers to provide potentially helpful information to a defendant who was originally charged with murder and convicted of voluntary manslaughter was a violation of the defendant’s constitutional rights. The manslaughter conviction was reversed and the case was sent back for retrial for an offense no greater than voluntary manslaughter.
After he was convicted, but prior to being sentenced, the defendant hired a private investigator who spoke with a witness who told them that one of the two people involved in a scuffle with the defendant always carried a gun. This witness indicated that he had provided this information to the police.
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