The man convicted of killing a 7-year-old girl who became the namesake of Megan's Laws across the country should be allowed to pursue claims that his lawyers were ineffective, a state appeals court ruled Tuesday.
But the appeals court did not agree with Jesse Timmendequas' argument that his kidnapping, sexual assault and murder conviction should be overturned and he should be released from prison.
Instead, the appeals court ordered a state judge to consider whether there's merit to Timmendequas' arguments about faulty representation.
Timmendequas was convicted in 1997 and given a death sentence with the provision that if the death sentence was vacated by a court, he would still serve consecutive life sentences for murder and first-degree kidnapping. The state Supreme Court affirmed the conviction and the federal Supreme Court refused to hear his appeal.