Chris Coleman trial evidence could go public

5:23 AM, Jul 7, 2011   |    comments
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Christopher Coleman

Columbia, IL (KSDK) - Some evidence from the Chris Coleman murder trial could be public as soon as Thursday. This past May, Coleman was convicted of killing his wife and two sons in their Columbia, Illinois home.

The Monroe County Courthouse Clerk's Office spent the day preparing to release the evidence and setting aside what the judge said he won't make public.

Barring any appeals, Chris Coleman will spend the rest of his life behind bars for killing his wife Sheri and their sons Garret and Gavin. But as soon as Thursday, evidence from his trial could be released to the public.

As a case that had crowds cheering Coleman's conviction, and intense interest from the public, several news organizations requested the release of exhibits from the trial.

On Wednesday, Judge Milton Wharton decided what he would and would not release. Wharton, who presided over the Coleman trial, said his priority was the privacy of the surviving families and he would not release graphic photos of the victims at the crime scene.

Graphic videos made by Coleman and his mistress will not be released either. But other videos shown to jurors will be released.

Prosecutors presented taped testimony from televangelist Joyce Meyer. In it, she recalled Coleman's changing behavior in the weeks before the murders. And in the hours after the murders, Columbia police videotaped an interrogation of Coleman.

With the expected release of the evidence, soon those who followed the trial can judge for themselves.

Both prosecutors and defense attorneys objected to the release of this material. They argue that if Coleman is successful in an appeal and gets a new trial, it would be next to impossible to find a fair jury with the evidence out in the open.


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