Holliman appeals murder conviction

November 16, 2013 10:22:07 PM

Sarah Fowler - sfowler@cdispatch.com

 

A Caledonia man convicted of murder is asking a judge to throw out the guilty verdict.  

 

Brian Holliman appeared before Circuit Court Judge Lee Howard on Friday and asked the court for either an acquittal notwithstanding the verdict or a new trial. In August, Holliman was found guilty of first-degree murder in the 2008 shooting death of his wife, Laura Lee Godfrey Holliman, in their Caledonia home. 

 

Represented by attorney Steve Farese Sr., Holliman asked for an acquittal based on five points, all involving alleged court errors.  

 

Howard did not make a ruling on the motion Friday. 

 

One of the points focused on two statements entered into evidence by the prosecution during the trial. The prosecution said Brian Holliman gave both statements to law enforcement in the days after his wife's death. Farese objected but Howard allowed the statements to be entered. 

 

Farese alleges that the court also erred when it allowed witnesses Lee Ann Tucker and Angela Jones to testify to conversations they had with Laura Lee Godfrey Holliman before her death. The conversations are hearsay and should not have been allowed, Farese claims. 

 

The August conviction was the second time Holliman has been found guilty of killing his wife. Holliman was originally found guilty of the crime in 2009 but Farese appealed to the Mississippi State Supreme Court on the grounds that District Attorney Forrest Allgood violated the Golden Rule Act when he asked jurors on four separate occasions how they would feel with a gun pointed in their face. The high court overturned the conviction and ordered a new trial. 

 

In August, it took the jury seven hours to find Holliman guilty of first-degree murder.

Sarah Fowler covers crime, education and community related events for The Dispatch.