A three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals heard arguments Tuesday on whether convicted killer Colton Pitonyak deserves a new trial after his attorneys said a jailhouse confession by his accomplice was withheld from his original defense team.
In a rare court review, which comes after six years of unsuccessful petitions to lower courts, the 5th Circuit will determine whether the Travis County district attorney’s office had knowledge of the evidence and failed to disclose it and whether that could have altered the strategy of his attorneys at the time of his 2007 murder trial, at which he was convicted and sentenced to 55 years for the death of Jennifer Cave.
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