11 states ask SCOTUS to reinstate Skakel conviction

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) -- Eleven states are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to hear Connecticut's appeal in Kennedy cousin Michael Skakel's murder case and reinstate his conviction. The states filed a friend-of-the-court brief on Monday.

The court is deciding whether to take up the appeal. The Connecticut Supreme Court in May vacated Skakel's conviction in the bludgeoning death of Martha Moxley in their wealthy Greenwich neighborhood in 1975, when they were teenagers.

The 4-3 majority said Skakel's trial lawyer failed to contact an alibi witness. Connecticut prosecutors argue the court didn't properly weigh the overall performance of Skakel's defense.

The states say a ruling in Connecticut's favor is needed to thwart excessive challenges of defense lawyers' performance. The states are Alaska, Arizona, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Nebraska, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas and Utah.

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