PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) - A man released on bail after serving 25-years in prison for murder was back in court today, once again fighting for his freedom.
Anthony Sanborn was convicted in 1992 for the murder of 16-year old Jessica Briggs. He is hoping a review of his case will lead to his conviction being thrown out. Today the state argued the defense has not presented sufficient grounds for the court to review the case.
After spending more than two decades in prison, Sanborn was released on bail in April after the state’s key witness, Hope Cady, recanted her original testimony that she saw Sanborn stab Jessica Briggs. At today's hearing a state prosecutor told the judge that as recently as 2015 the defense knew Cady had stuck to her original story.
“When in fact she has a 2015 report where Hope Cady says I know what I saw and I know he’s not innocent”, said Assistant Attorney General Meg Elam.
The state also claims there is new information that leads them to believe Cady’s original testimony implicating Sanborn was true.
The defense claims the state withheld key evidence favorable to Sanborn’s case from his original attorneys. Information that it was required to hand over and only became available when files taken home by a retired detective were turned over to the defense.
“That is a treasure trove and what it shows is that this investigation and this trial and the state’s regard for Anthony Sanborn’s due process rights, was a malevolent charade”, said defense attorney Amy Fairfield.
Justice Joyce Wheeler said she would not be granting the state’s motion to dismiss the defense’s case for review. But, she said she would be requiring the defense to submit a timetable of when it became aware of certain evidence in the case. She said she would release her full decision and requirements by the end of next week.
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