STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) — The conviction of a Mississippi woman found guilty of killing her husband seven years ago has been overturned.
The Commercial Dispatch of Columbus reports 35-year-old Verina Childs was sentenced to life for the 2009 shooting death of her husband. Judge Lee Howard overturned her sentence Monday after her attorney, Matt Kitchens, argued Childs should get a new trial as the crime's location was left out of original jury instructions.
Howard says the venue is an "essential element of the criminal process" so it should be included in jury instructions. The state Court of Appeals ruled last year that failing to list a venue as an offense element in jury instructions is grounds for a new trial.
District Attorney Scott Colom says he plans to appeal to the state Supreme Court.