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    Ark. court orders new trial for Samuel Conway, man convicted in quintuple killing

    5:56 PM, Nov 8, 2012   |    comments
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    Samuel Conway

    A letter to THV 11 from Karen Gentry McNeely, daughter of Edward Gentry Sr.: 

    My heart is breaking...On November 11, 2009, my last words to my dad were ‘Happy Veteran's Day, I Love you’ Dad said...”I have to go Karen, someone is at the door, I love you too, see you Friday.’

    They broke in his door and killed my 80 year old father just as I hung up the phone. They went next door and killed my brother and his family and burned their home. If I had only stayed on the phone a moment longer...”

    To read the entire letter from Karen McNeely, click here.

     

     

    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - The Arkansas Supreme Court says a man convicted in the 2009 shooting deaths of five people deserves a new trial.

    Conway argued that he deserved a new trial because a judge did not dismiss a juror who said he couldn't be fair to Conway.

    Now, the family of these victims and the Garland County prosecutor will have to live through this trial for a second time.

    Nearly three years to the day when five members of the same family were brutally murdered in Pearcy, Arkansas' high court ordered a new trial in the case.

    The court sided with murder suspect Samuel Conway, stating the judge abused his discretion when he didn't get rid of the juror in question in June 2011.

    The jury was instructed not to make up their minds during the trial on what a verdict should be until they discuss the case in the jury room together.

    Garland County Prosecuting attorney Steve Oliver says the prosecution had one witness to call on stand when a juror came forward and said, "Basically due to the testimony and pictures I've seen. I haven't been getting any sleep. I basically know that's a bad scene. I've basically made up my mind on this case and I've gotten to the point where I'm sleeping with my shotguns underneath my bed that's loaded because the testimony I've been hearing. It's bad saying, but I've made up mind about the case already this early."

    Oliver says this is why the Supreme Court ordered a new trial.

    Conway, along with another man, were accused of burning and killing the Gentry family in 2009.

    Karen Gentry McNeely, daughter of 80-year-old victim, Edward Gentry Sr., sent THV 11 an e-mail Thursday in reaction to the court's reversal.

    In part, it read:"This is one of the largest most horrific murders in Hot Springs, if not the country, to go about virtually unknown and and now to go through another re trail and or go free is unbelievable."

    Oliver feels for the victim's family, saying, "Before they were victimized by Conway and the other people involved, and now they feel like they've been victimized by the legal system, the system they trusted in."

    Jeremy Pickney, the other man in this case pleaded guilty in the case in exchange a lesser sentence.

    Pickney is serving a 50-year prison sentence with the option of parole.

    No date has been set for Conway's new trial.

    Prosecutors say it will be placed on the docket for sometime next year.


     

     

     

     

     

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