A Mohave County first degree murder convict has had his death sentence overturned. Thursday’s Arizona Supreme Court ruling comes in the case against Darrell Ketchner, 55, Kingman. Ketchner was convicted of the brutal stabbing death of 18-year-old Ariel Allison on the 4th of July, 2009. The jury also found him guilty of charges associated with shooting and wounding Ariel’s mother Jennifer Allison, the mother of Ketchner’s three youngest children. The Court ruled that the trial was flawed by the state’s use of an expert who testified about profiles of domestic violence cases. The justices held that the testimony might have been prejudicial for the jury. Other convictions in the same case stand. While the death penalty is dismissed, Ketchner must still serve 75 years in prison barring further prosecution. The Mohave County attorney’s office can accept the decision and dismiss the reversed charges, attempt to negotiate a plea agreement or try the case again.
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