In January 2008 the Georgia Supreme Court overturned the murder conviction of Tom Edwin Chumley, 59, accused of killing his mother, after reviewing the presiding judges comments about his two taped confessions.
Chief Judge J. Carlisle Overstreet told the jury during the 2005 trial that the confessions made by Mr. Chumley were made voluntarily.
Mr. Chumleys attorney, Pete Theodocion petitioned the judge today not to allow the taped confessions in the second trial, claiming Mr. Chumleys mental incapacity at the time did not allow him to understand his actions and knowingly waive his right to remain silent.
Mr. Chumley was indicted on murder and weapons charges in April 2004, after authorities said he confessed to killing his mother, Meredith Pete Guy, 74, whose body was found in her Martinez home Feb. 28, 2003.
He was sentenced to life in prison plus five years.
The state court concluded Mr. Chumley was undeniably guilty, but that Judge Overstreets comments about the confessions to the jury were clearly prejudicial.
After several witness testimonies, Judge Overstreet ruled that Mr. Chumley was coherent enough at the time of the confessions to knowingly waive his rights and made voluntary statements to police.
Mr. Chumley was transferred from a state prison in June to the Columbia County Detention Center, where he is being held without bond.
No trial date has been set.
Reach Valerie Rowell at (706) 868-1222, ext. 110 or