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Defense attorneys ask Oklahoma County District Judge to dismiss charges against man in murder case

Billy Thompson's murder conviction overturned because prosecutors withheld evidence from his attorneys; Manuel L. Sanchez, 21, was stabbed to death in 2010
by Tim Willert Modified: October 9, 2012 at 8:53 pm •  Published: October 10, 2012

Defense attorneys have asked a judge to dismiss charges against a man whose murder conviction was overturned because of prosecutorial misconduct.

Jurors convicted Billy Thompson in March of first-degree murder in the Aug. 17, 2010, stabbing death of Manuel Leon Sanchez, 21.

The panel also convicted Thompson of assault and battery for stabbing Maxwell M. McIntyre, 19, in the chest.

Oklahoma County District Judge Donald L. Deason tossed out the conviction and set a new trial date after prosecutors in the case were found to have withheld critical evidence from Thompson's attorneys.

Assistant district attorneys Pam Kimbrough and Stephanie Miller were fired by their boss, District Attorney David Prater, after Prater learned they withheld a witness statement that could have been favorable to Thompson's case.

Thompson's new trial was set to begin Monday, but was postponed after public defenders assigned to Thompson's case filed a motion late last month asking the judge to dismiss the charges.

“Subjecting Mr. Thompson to another trial violates fundamental fairness,” assistant public defender Shea Smith wrote in a brief supporting Thompson's change of plea from not guilty to former jeopardy. “The government should get one chance to prove its case. Here, the government blew its chance to prove its case because the government knowingly cheated.”

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by Tim Willert
Tim Willert is a native Californian with Oklahoma ties who covers education. Prior to moving to Oklahoma in June 2011, he was as an editor for in Century City, Calif., and reported on courts for the Los Angeles Daily Journal and...
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