Trial date set in overturned 1988 murder case
WAYNE -- A prisoner whose murder conviction was overturned by a federal judge has a trial date for August 2013, according to Wayne County Prosecutor Tom Plymale.
Stephen Westley Hatfield, 62, won another chance at trial in July when his guilty plea and punishment were overturned by a federal court.
Hatfield is accused of fatally shooting his former girlfriend, Tracey Andrews, on May 8, 1988, at her home in Wayne County. He also was charged with wounding her then-boyfriend Dewey Meyers and neighbor Roger Cox, according to federal court documents.
Hatfield pleaded guilty to murder and two counts of malicious wounding. It netted him a life prison sentence without parole, according to federal court documents.
U.S. District Judge Robert C. Chambers overturned that conviction July 10, upholding an earlier decision of a federal magistrate judge.
Hatfield had petitioned the federal court, claiming he was not mentally competent at the time of his plea and that the trial court had violated his right to pretrial hearings about mental competency and criminal responsibility.
The case became known as the Mother's Day crime spree. Plymale said allegations were the shooting was followed by a reported carjacking in Ohio and a break-in at a gun shop in Cabell County. Hatfield then received gunshot wounds in an exchange of gunfire with local police, according to federal court documents.
Plymale said Hatfield lost three efforts at the state Supreme Court to overturn his conviction, all before moving the case to federal court.
Meyers and Cox are still living, Plymale said.
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