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State appeals triple-murder conviction reversal to US Supreme Court

February 22, 2017

A man’s murder convictions vacated in a habeas decision by the en banc 7th Circuit Court of Appeals should be reviewed by the United States Supreme Court, the Indiana Attorney General’s Office says.

The office of Attorney General Curtis Hill petitioned the court for certiorari in Ron Neal v. Wayne Kubsch, 14-1898, and the 7th Circuit on Tuesday extended the stay of its mandate that would have required Kubsch’s release or retrial.

Kubsch was convicted in 1998 and sentenced to death for murdering his wife, Beth Kubsch, Rick Milewski and Aaron Milewski, who was Rick Milweski and Beth Kubsch’s son, in Mishawaka.

In September, the 7th Circuit held in a 6-3 decision that the state had violated Kubsch’s 14th Amendment due process rights when the trial court refused to admit evidence of videotaped witness testimony that placed Kubsch somewhere other than the crime scene at the time the killings took place. The court found a jury could have found Kubsch not guilty had the evidence, the strongest for the defense, been presented at trial.  

St. Joseph County Prosecutor Kenneth Cotter said in a press release Tuesday the AG’s petition questions the 7th Circuit’s application of an evidence standard the court cited in aligning its decision with a prior Supreme Court decision.
 

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