Convicted killer's lawyers request new trial, lesser charge

Darrius Sherrod was convicted of capital murder earlier this year. (Source: WAFF file)
Darrius Sherrod was convicted of capital murder earlier this year. (Source: WAFF file)

DECATUR, AL (WAFF) - A convicted killer wants a new trial.

Thursday, lawyers for Darrius Sherrod argued their case to the judge and threw in a couple of other requests for their client too - primarily that they want the charge against him knocked down if a new trial is granted.

They said that if the shooting death of Matthew Homer Jackson happened out in the street instead of in vehicles, Sherrod likely would not have been charged with capital murder. So they want a new trial with a charge of reckless murder.

Judge Steven Haddock, the same judge who presided over the trial, has taken the matter under advisement and will decide later.

A Morgan County jury convicted Darrius Sherrod on capital murder for shooting and killing 19-year-old Jackson in September 2010 on Clara Avenue in Decatur. Sherrod was sentenced to life in prison without the chance for parole.

Sherrod shot from a car into a truck. Jackson was in the driver's seat. There had been an ongoing dispute between Sherrod and the man in the passenger seat of the truck. Sherrod's lawyers say because he was 18 when it happened, and because of the circumstances, he should have the chance for freedom someday.

The District Attorney does not agree with this argument. He says the exact thing the very circumstances the defense uses in its claim for a new trial and lesser charges is why this was a capital murder case to begin with.

Scott Anderson said any charge but capital murder would be impossible because Sherrod fired from inside a car. He said state law dictates that shooting either from inside a vehicle or into a vehicle and killing someone mandates a capital murder charge.

Sherrod's attorneys said if the judge rejects their motion, his conviction will be appealed to a higher court.

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