Judge delays Skakel sentence
until August 28, 2002
By Associated Press, 7/29/2002 17:30

NORWALK, Conn. (AP) A judge Monday postponed the sentencing of Kennedy cousin Michael Skakel for Martha Moxley's murder until Aug. 28.

Skakel, 41, was convicted last month of beating Moxley to death with a golf club when they were 15-year-old neighbors in an exclusive section of Greenwich. A nephew of Ethel Kennedy, Skakel faces between 10 years and life in prison when he is sentenced.

The sentencing had been scheduled for Aug. 9 and had already been postponed once.

Skakel's lawyer, Michael Sherman, had requested a 30-day delay, saying more time was needed to provide information to the Probation Department. Prosecutors objected, saying Sherman has had plenty of time to prepare.

''Insofar as the offense in this matter occurred 26 1/2 years ago and the arrest occurred 2 1/2 years ago, the State views finality to be of paramount importance,'' prosecutor John Smriga wrote in his brief to Superior Court Judge John F. Kavanewsky Jr.

Kavankewsky previously delayed the sentencing from July 19 after consulting with the probation officer who is conducting a pre-sentencing investigation of Skakel.

Kavanewsky also plans to hear defense motions challenging Skakel's conviction during the Aug. 28 hearing.

Defense attorneys have objected to jury instructions and the admission of certain evidence. They also argued that the jury was improperly inflamed by gruesome photos of the victim paired with Skakel's comments to an interviewer who planned to write a book about Skakel.

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