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Louisiana Supreme Court to take up 25-year-old, non-unanimous jury murder conviction

Published: May. 9, 2022 at 9:28 PM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) -Gathering on the steps of the Louisiana Supreme Court, criminal justice reform advocates pray, sing, and hope for a favorable outcome in an impending ruling.

“We had to raise our voice to the heavens and hope that this is historical wrong of 10-2 jury verdicts would be overturned tomorrow,” said Fox Rich.

Fox Rich with Participatory Defense Movement, or PDM NOLA, says they’ve seen the faults of the criminal justice system firsthand.

25 years after the murder conviction, the state’s supreme court will take up the case The State of Louisiana vs. Reginald Reddick.

Rich says it could change the fate of more than 15 hundred people still incarcerated from a non-unanimous jury conviction.

“It is understood it’s supposed to be retroactive none of us in the state should be able to sleep at night knowing that 1500 of our citizens have unconstitutionally gone to prison behind a racist law,” said Rich.

Rich says it should not be a question of what to do with those convictions.

“The implications are, are they going to have to retry 1500 cases,” said Doug Sunseri.

Attorney Doug Sunseri says the court’s ruling will have a big impact on the criminal justice system.

The next question is what the courts and leaders decide to do with those incarcerated defendants.

“Do you release them? Do you release them on bond do you detain them? So that’s another issue and that may vary from parish to parish?” said Sunseri.

“What we’re doing is letting back to the street people who we have held illegally for some 20, 30, 40 years it’s about doing the right thing,” said Rich.

We spoke with the family of the victim in this case, Al Moliere. They said they believe Reddick should stay incarcerated.

The Louisiana State Supreme Court hearing is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon.

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