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Court hears Devon Callicutt’s appeal

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Albany/HV: Court hears Devon Callicutt’s appeal
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The man convicted of murdering UAlbany student Richard Bailey back in 2008 pleads for another trial. Our Solomon Syed covered Devon Callicutt's murder trial back in 2010. He was at Tuesday's hearing and joined us from the State's Appellate Court with the details.

ALBANY, N.Y. -- Almost two years after he was found guilty of murdering UAlbany student Richard Bailey, Devon Callicutt's attorney stood before five state appellate judges, asking them to overturn that conviction.

"It's necessary to view that evidence in the light most favorable to the defendant," said Paul Connelly, Callicutt’s attorney.

Connelly listed 13 reasons why his client should get a new trial, but the judges focused on two main points. First, if Callicutt should have been charged with manslaughter in Bailey's shooting death. That would have given jurors an alternative to the murder count.

"What I want to know is what's the misconduct on behalf of the police, knowing that he might write letters home?" asked the Honorable E. Michael Kavanagh, an Appellate Court Judge.

And the second, if Callicutt's now infamous jailhouse confession letters should have been allowed as evidence. He wrote them just days after police illegally interviewed him in jail.

Steven Sharp, Albany County Assistant District Attorney, said, "The defendant wasn't forced to write the letters. He didn't do it ‘cause the police told him to."

Richard Bailey's parents drove up from Long Island to attend the hearing. They remained stoic as both sides argued their case.

The DA's office remains confident Callicutt's conviction will be upheld, even as Callicutt seeks a shot at a do-over.

"We don't waste time thinking about whether or not defendants will accept responsibility. The case that the jury returned a conviction on was the best possible case that could have been made," said Albany County District Attorney David Soares.

Bailey's parents did not wish to speak with us about their son's killer's attempt at a new trial.

The five judge panel could take several weeks, or even a few months, to render their decision.

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