Bishop Is Denied Freedom After 15 Years For Murder PDF Print E-mail
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Monday, 25 September 2017 13:03

A convicted murderer tried convincing a Chattooga County Superior Court judge to free him Monday, according to court records.

Harold LaFaughn Bishop, 76, killed his wife 21 years ago in their Berryton home. He's been serving a life sentence at Georgia State Prison in Reidsville for the last 15 years and Sept. 18 he continued his quest to be set free.
"He had a motion for a new trial," Sheriff Mark Schrader said.
After receiving a court order, the sheriff sent a deputy to get Bishop from prison in South Georgia on {Sept. 17}.
"With the prison system recovering from the hurricane, they were not busing any inmates. We had to go get him," the sheriff said.
Bishop appeared in court [Sept. 18] morning with his court appointed attorney, Jennifer E. Hildebrand, of LaFayette. 
His attorney claims that Bishop did not receive a fair trial in 2002.
"The verdict against [Bishop] is contrary to the evidence and without sufficient evidence to support it. The court committed error of law warranting a new trial. The trial court erred in allowing the hearsay testimony of the victim. The trial court erred in the jury instruction in that he referred to murder and corrected to felony murder on more than one occasion," his attorney claims.
Superior Court Judge Brian House does not agree. 
"The above case having come on to be heard by this court on [Bishop's] motion for new trial on Sept. 18, 2017, and after hearing evidence and the argument of counsel, [Bishop's] motion is hereby denied," Judge House ruled.
This isn't the first or second time Bishop has appeared in court.
It took three different jury trials before the district attorney's office successfully sent Bishop to prison. 
Bishop's first trial was in 1998 and the district attorney won a conviction. But Bishop appealed his guilty verdict and in 1999 the Georgia Supreme Court overturned his conviction.
The case was overturned because the local judge overhearing the original Bishop case left out several words in a legal charge to the jury, according to Supreme Court Judges’ rulings.
The district attorney retried Bishop in 2000. But it was unsuccessful when jurors could not reach a verdict and a mistrial was declared.
A third trial was held in 2002 and Bishop was convicted and received his life sentence.
Bishop killed his wife Sherry with a shotgun. He claimed it was in self-defense.

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