Court won't take up Christian-Newsom retrial appeals

Court won't take up Christian-Newsom retrial appeals


KNOXVILLE (AP) - The Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals has said that it won't take up an extraordinary appeal involving a lower court's decision to throw out convictions in the murders of a Knoxville couple who was kidnapped and sexually tortured.

Friday's split court decision is a setback for Knox County prosecutors who were hoping that they wouldn't be forced to retry cases heard by a judge who is said to have been high on prescription drugs.

A lower court has already found that Criminal Court Judge Richard Baumgartner was impaired by drugs his last two years on the bench.

Baumgartner admitted to being an addict when he pleaded guilty to official misconduct last year. An investigative file showed the judge was buying pills from convicts during court breaks.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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