Virginia court hears appeal in Prince William County capital-murder case

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Local,Virginia,Crime,Naomi Jagoda

Federal appeals court judges in Richmond on Monday heard the case of a man whose Prince William County murder-for-hire conviction had been overturned.

Justin Michael Wolfe had been convicted of capital murder in the 2001 slaying of his marijuana supplier and was sentenced to death. But his conviction was reversed in 2011 because he was denied his due-process rights when prosecutors withheld information from his lawyers and because prosecutors had used false testimony from a key witness.

Last month, a federal judge ordered that Wolfe be released and not be retried. But barely an hour before Wolfe was going to be set free, the federal appeals court stayed the order.

On Monday, the appeals court heard Wolfe's case, and the judges appeared to be hesitant to use federal power to bar a state prosecution, according to the Associated Press.

njagoda@washingtonexaminer.com

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Naomi Jagoda

Staff reporter
The Washington Examiner