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Inmate sentenced to death will get new trial in 1997 Cincinnati slaying

Posted at 11:46 AM, May 20, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-20 19:13:13-04

CINCINNATI (AP) — A 49-year-old man sentenced to death will get a new trial in the 1997 slaying of a Cincinnati convenience store owner.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday let stand a 2018 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decision that agreed with attorneys for Ahmad Fawzi Issa that statements about his involvement in a murder-for-hire case were hearsay and violated his right to confront witnesses against him. The court threw out his conviction and sentence for allegedly arranging the shooting of Maher Khrais outside his store in 1997.

Hamilton County prosecutor's spokeswoman Julie Wilson said a pretrial hearing in the case is scheduled May 30. Issa has been held in state prison since 1998.

His attorney, Adele Shank of Columbus, called the high court's decision "right and appropriate."