A state appeals court has decided to let convicted killer Terry Speaks’ appeal of his conviction wait until the state district court judge who conducted his trial considers a separate motion for a new trial.
Speaks is serving a life sentence in the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola for the killing of Bourbon Street dancer Jaren Lockhart.
The state 5th Circuit Court of Appeal this week remanded his appeal back to 24th Judicial District Judge Stephen Grefer’s court “without prejudice, for the purpose of hearing and ruling on the defendant’s motion for a new trial,” according to court documents filed Thursday.
That motion, filed last month, claims an inmate from an upstate New York prison tried to reach Speaks’ attorneys before his trial, only to have his misdirected letter languish in the Orleans Parish Public Defender’s Office until after Speaks was convicted.
The inmate said he was willing to testify that one of the three inmates who testified that Speaks confessed to the crime in prison was lying.
Grefer is scheduled to hear the motion for a new trial on Jan. 19.