In a 2-1 ruling Wednesday, the Circuit Court of Appeals overturned the 1992 murder conviction of Kenny Roy Miller. A Warren County jury found Miller guilty of murder and attempted murder for fatally shooting Leon Gray and wounding Gray's girlfriend, Linda Cline, while they were sleeping. Warren Circuit Judge Steve Wilson prosecuted that case as Commonwealth Attorney, and says he's disappointed with the decision. "This was a good case and for the court at the federal level, after 12 years of appeals, to overturn it is disappointing."
In their decision to overturn, the Appeals Court Justices ruled one of the jurors may have had a predjudice because they knew Cline. Wilson says attorneys for both sides were aware that a jury member had met Cline through Bible study, but the Appeals Court stated the defense attorney's performance in jury selection was "objectively unreasonable."
Wilson says the Commonwealth Attorney's office will consider having the full 10-member Appeals Court re-examine the ruling, and either way, the case may be appealed to the Supreme Court.
A new trial for Miller is a possibility if the Supreme Court declines to hear the case, but Wilson says detectives who investigated the murder are already gathering evidence in preparation.
Miller is currently serving a life sentence in the Green River Correctional Facility.