FORT SMITH, Ark. (AP) - A Sebastian County Circuit Court judge has denied a request for a new trial by a Fort Smith man convicted of killing an Oklahoma man.
The Times Record reports that the request by Eric Eugene Mason was rejected Wednesday by Judge Stephen Tabor. Tabor rejected Mason's argument that public defender John Joplin was ineffective by failing to tell him of a plea offer and for preventing him from testifying in his own defense.
Joplin denied the allegations.
Mason was convicted of second-degree murder and sentenced to 45 years in prison for the July 2011 stabbing death of Joshua Aaron Walter of Muldrow, Okla.
Mason claims he killed Walter in self-defense.
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