BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) — A Raleigh County Circuit Court Judge declared a mistrial in a murder case involving a father and son.
According to statements made in court, Judge H.L. Kirkpatrick declared the mistrial during opening arguments. During opening statements, the prosecution reportedly told jurors that Ronnie Cochran, who is accused of shooting and killing his son in 2019, would say his actions were in self-defense.
Judge Kirkpatrick said this statement took away Cochran’s Constitutional right not to testify because it prejudiced jurors before he made the decision whether or not to take the stand.
“It’s a crucial issue. This is a critical matter. The court perceives there is no way to rehabilitate the situation. It is prejudiced to the defendant.”Judge H.L. Kirkpatrick | Raleigh County Circuit Court Judge
Ronnie Cochran will now have a new trial with a panel of new jurors.
Stick with 59News for updates on the trial.