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Last updated 10:25PM ET
September 2, 2014
St. Louis Public Radio News
St. Louis Public Radio News
Helmig remains jailed for now
(2010-11-10)
(St. Louis Public Radio) - A Missouri Circuit Court judge is deferring to a higher court before deciding whether to release a man he says was wrongfully convicted of murder.

DeKalb County Judge Warren McElwain last week reversed the 1996 murder conviction of Dale Helmig, citing a lack of evidence, poor representation and prosecutorial zeal.

Attorney Sean O'Brien of the Midwestern Innocence Project says Judge McElwain wants the Western Appeals Court in Kansas City to weigh in on the matter.

"(McElwain has) never been in this situation, so he's not positive that he has the power to release (Helmig) on bail, and would like an Appellate Court to tell him to do that," O'Brien said.

McElwain's ruling last week is being challenged by Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster. O'Brien says, though, that Judge McElwain will order Helmig's release if the Attorney General doesn't file his appeal by November 22nd.

Helmig was convicted of killing his mother, whose body was found chained to a concrete block in the Osage River during the 1993 floods.

Helmig has maintained his innocence, and his brother Richard has publicly spoken out in his defense.

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