Death sentence overturned in Lake County bartender's murder

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- A prosecutor says he'll ask the Ohio Supreme Court to reconsider its decision overturning the conviction and death sentence of a man accused of raping and fatally stabbing a bartender.

The court's 4-3 ruling Wednesday sent the case of defendant Joseph Thomas back to northeast Ohio's Lake County for a new trial.

The 33-year-old Thomas was convicted and sentenced to death in 2012 for the slaying of Annie McSween two years earlier.

Justice Terrence O'Donnell said the trial judge improperly allowed into evidence a knife collection belonging to Thomas, but not involved in the killing.

Lake County Prosecutor Charles Coulson says a knife missing from the collection was part of the circumstantial evidence against Thomas.

Coulson has 30 days to file for his reconsideration.

© 2017 Associated Press


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