Gray

 

Defense Attorney Rodney Barnes makes a point during the Anthony Gray murder trial hearing on Thursday. Seated in back of him are Gray and defense team member Kristen Gonzalez. The murder trial continues into its 12th year.

 

The trial of Anthony Gray continued on Thursday when Keith Eardley, special prosecutor for the 13th Circuit Court brought several new motions to Judge Thomas Clark to consider and to revisit information from the April 25 hearing. Present in the courtroom was Gray and his defense team.

Gray stands accused of killing his parents in April of 2007 and has been incarcerated ever since. He has been held at several detention centers over the past 12 years but is currently being held at the Franklin County Regional Jail in Frankfort. One of the motions presented was a plea to the court to expedite the remainder of the trial. 

Another motion brought by the prosecution was a motion to permit the use of the term “confession.” Gray has allegedly confessed on three separate occasions: Oct. 20, 21 and 22, 2007. However, defense attorneys objected to the use of the term because it implies guilt on the part of Gray. 

Clark ultimately ruled to allow the Commonwealth to refer to the statement made on Oct. 22, as a confession.

In a further motion the admission of the statement made by Gray on Oct. 22, Eardley requested only the comments Gray made after his lawyer was present be admissible. Defense Attorney Rodney Barnes countered the motion by saying all of the information made in the statement on Oct. 22 was critical to the jury’s understanding of why Gray confessed. 

“Jurors must have the ‘why’ information. We are looking for the trial strategy that best serves Mr. Gray and we ask that those options not be taken away,” said Barnes. 

A third motion generated considerable discussion about the 2016 Kentucky Supreme Court ruling that overturned a guilty conviction 2013. 

That ruling overturned the conviction based in part on the assertion law enforcement officials tampered with the evidence and that Gray entered a false confession. 

At that time, the defense brought Dr. Richard Ofshe, a sociology professor at the University of California at Berkeley who has studied false confessions, to testify for the defense and offer an expert testimony as to why Gray may have entered the false confession. The prosecution challenged this testimony. 

 “We do not challenge the credentials of Dr. Ofshe but we challenge specific information in the report,” said Eardley. The prosecutor then suggested the use of a Daubert hearing where expert testimony could be challenged and then examined for admissibility. 

Clark ruled to allow the jury the opportunity to consider the testimony of Dr. Oshee. The judge stated a Daubert hearing would not be used.

The pretrial hearing will be held on Nov. 14, at the Scott County Circuit Court.

 

Jackie Anders can be reached at janders@news-graphic.com.

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