NEW trial for Shelton Jackson?

Thursday, July 26th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

One of Tulsa's most notorious killers may get a new trial. A judge ruled Shelton Jackson's attorneys made mistakes in his defense, leaving the door open for a new trial.

KOTV's Emory Bryan says Shelton Jackson was convicted of the murder of Monica Decatur and the severe beating of her son Oz. He killed Monica and burned her house. He beat Oz and left him under a house in freezing weather. Jackson is serving a life sentence for the crimes.

At trial, his attorneys conceded Jackson's guilt, in an attempt to maintain credibility with the jury and avoid a possible death penalty verdict. Jackson now says he didn't give consent for the attorneys to use that strategy, and no record of it was made at the time. That prompted Judge Jesse Harris to declare Jackson had "ineffective counsel" Steve Sewell, Tulsa Co District Attorney's Office: "Todays ruling will be sent back to the court of criminal appeals, the overall appeal is still up at the court in Oklahoma City and it will be up to them to make the final decision." That could be either to let the verdict stand, or to order a new trial for Shelton Jackson.

A decision could come as soon as 30 days, but it usually takes several months for the appeals court to make a decision.