Michael Skakel Loses Appeal

By Brennan McCord

Apr 12, 2010 1:43pm

ABC News' Brennan McCord reports:

Kennedy cousin Michael Skakel has lost an appeal of his 2002 conviction for murdering his 15-year- old neighbor in Greenwich, Connecticut.  On Monday, the Connecticut Supreme Court rejected by a vote of 4-1  Skakel’s request that the conviction be overturned because two other men had been implicated in the case.

Skakel was sentenced to 20 years to life in prison for beating Martha Moxley with a golf club in an upscale Connecticut neighborhood in 1975. 

Skakel, 49, a nephew of Robert Kennedy’s widow, Ethel, had been appealing the ruling for years with the help of Skakel’s cousin, Robet Kennedy Jr.   Skakel, 49, had asked for a new trial after Gitano "Tony" Bryant, who attended the same private school as Skakel, implicated his two friends in the killing. A judge turned that request down in 2007, and Skakel then appealed to the high court.

Bryant gave a statement on videotape to an investigator hired by Skakel in which Bryant claimed that two of his friends were in Greenwich the night Moxey was killed.  Bryant claimed that his friend told him that they got Moxey “caveman style.”

Bryant and the two men he implicated have since invoked the 5th amendment right against self-incrimination.  Prosecutors in the case say that Bryant’s claims are fabricated.

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In 2006, Skakel lost an appeal before the state Supreme Court in which he argued that the statute of limitations had expired when he was charged in 2000. He still has an appeal pending in federal court.


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