It has been an ongoing battle for the family of Melissa Trotter. The Montgomery County college student was murdered back in 1998. The man arrested for that murder was Larry Swearingen. Since his conviction he’s had several appeals to his death conviction. The latest came this year after his current defense team claims investigators bungled the case 13 years ago. In that new attempt at freedom Swearingen’s attorneys say the coroner who investigated the case mishandled evidence.
Defense attorneys say if they would’ve properly preserved maggots found in the victim’s remains they would’ve known Swearingen was behind bars when Trotter was murdered. The Insite hears a Montgomery County judge has rejected this latest attempt at a new trial for the convicted killer. But it’s not over yet. Trotter’s family members say there will be a rebuttal hearing by Swearingen’s legal team in a few weeks. This latest legal proceeding was in Judge Fred Edward’s court in Montgomery County!
“Larry Swearingen and his defense team say they’ve uncovered new evidence that could get him a new trial and escape the death penalty for the fourth time. Swearingen says Harris County coroners mishandled evidence during the investigation. His defense attorney, Steven Jackson, claims if they would’ve properly handled the maggots found in the victim’s remains, investigators could tell she died while Swearingen was behind bars on Dec. 11, 1998. Jackson says, “There’s a life cycle of the fly and when they lay these eggs, they turn into maggots. If you stop that life cycle upon finding the body, you can tell when that person was killed.” Prosecutor Warren Deprahm says Swearingen and his team are grasping at straws at the expense of a young woman’s memory and her family’s grief. Deprahm says, “This case has been through multiple appeals in the state and federal courts with writs. It’s time for this to end. He’s guilty of this offense and the family needs closure in this case.”