Michael Skakel Murder Conviction Reinstated

The Kennedy cousin may return to prison after a Connecticut court rejects a 2013 lower court ruling that had overturned his conviction.
2:13 | 12/31/16

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Transcript for Michael Skakel Murder Conviction Reinstated
murder case that has spanned more than 40 years. A court in Connecticut has reinstated the murder conviction of Michael skakel. He is a cousin to the Kennedy family and ABC's Gloria Rivera is on the story from Washington. Gloria, good morning to you. Reporter: Good morning, Dan. That's right, Michael skakel whose aunt Ethel Kennedy lived next to Martha Moxley has been free since posting bail in 20136789 now a 4-3 majority rejected the argument his trial was tainted by bad lawyering sending him back behind bars. This morning, troubled Kennedy cousin Michael skakel is a convicted murderer again. The Connecticut supreme court reinstating his conviction for the 1975 murder of Martha Moxley. The 15-year-old girl killed in her backyard the night before Halloween brutally beaten with a golf club belonging to the skakel family. She is Ethel Kennedy's nephew and was found guilty in 2002. After serving over ten years his conviction was thrown out in 2013. Skakel a free man, his family claiming the lawyer botched the defense. He had a terrible lawyer. He didn't get a fair trial and not guilty. Reporter: In a new twist skakel will be back on his way to prison. His team failing to prove the attorney actually mishandled the case. Very difficult for a defendant to establish ineffective counsel. Has to be a major defect in the way that the defense was presented. Reporter: The victim's mother agreeing with the initial ruling. Michael skakel got a fair trial. I really believe it. Reporter: While skakel plans to comply with the new court order he will continue to fight the decision. His cousin Robert Kennedy Jr. Telling ABC news overnight, right now we just want to concentrate on the legal process. Now, in that 2013 appeal that set him free skakel's attorney successfully argued his initial defense team failed to pursue an alibi witness or look at possible other suspects including skakel's own brother Thomas. It's not clear when skakel will return to prison. He has ten days to everything athe court to reconsider. If that fails his attorneys say he could take this case to the supreme court. More to come. Gloria, thank you.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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