Judge will allow McVay's Wisconsin television interview in trial
The television interview admitted killer James McVay conducted with a Wisconsin reporter will be allowed in court, a Sioux Falls judge said today.
During a motions hearing before Judge Peter Lieberman, McVay's defense brought forth several requests, including one to bar the television interview from being used during the trial.
McVay's defense argued that the interview itself wasn't relevant to sentencing because McVay has already plead guilty, but South Dakota State's Attorney Aaron McGowen argued to keep the interview.
"The lack of remorse the defendant shows for Ms. Schein is relevant," he said. Judge Lieberman agreed, denying the defense's request to keep the information out of the trial.
"It is highly relevant for the jury to know how Mr. McVay feels about the crime he committed," Lieberman said.
McVay's defense team also requested that the state provide photos and information on witnesses prior to the trial, asking that information used by the state be relevant, but not overwhelming to the jurors.
Lieberman asked prosecutors to work with the defense to ensure that "the evidence doesn't become a comparative judgement between McVay and Schein."
McVay pleaded guilty but mentally ill for the July 2011 murder of Maybelle Schein, and on March 17 a jury will decide his fate: life in prison or the death penalty.
Shortly after McVay, 43, murdered Schein, 75, he stole her car and was traveling east where he, admittedly, planned to carry out the rest of his plot to ultimately kill President Obama. McVay was stopped by Wisconsin authorities in Madison before he could fulfill his plan.
Following his capture, he made statements to officers and publicly to a local TV station in Madison. At which time, the defense team argued he was in a drug-induced psychosis. Officers and detectives had testified that McVay admitted to "proudly" killing Schein in his effort to continue carrying out his plot. They also noted McVay wanted the death penalty, making threats to kill correctional officers if he received a life sentence.
In July 2013, Lieberman said McVay was in an intelligent state of mind, not drug-induced at the time of the interviews. While McVay made strange and disturbing statements, Liberman called them coherent and articulate with no signs of mental incapacity.
Motions hearings will continue tomorrow, with the prosecutors and defense continuing to work out pre-trial details.
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