Sentence date for Skakel postponed
By Lindsey Faber - Greenwich Time

The sentencing date for Michael Skakel, who was convicted of the 1975 murder of Martha Moxley, was postponed for the second time yesterday to allow more time for a pre-sentence investigation.

Skakel, 41, incarcerated at Garner Correctional Institution, is scheduled to be sentenced Aug. 28. He faces 10 years to life in prison.

Skakel's original sentencing date of July 19 had already been postponed once to Aug. 9. Skakel's trial attorney, Michael Sherman, filed a motion last week asking for a monthlong continuance.

"This continuance is necessary to allow the defendant to provide relevant information to the probation department in mitigation of his sentence," Sherman's motion stated. "The probation department has no objection to this request and agrees that they would benefit from this additional time in order to prepare the presentence report, which must reflect upon the conduct of the defendant over the past 27 years."

Prosecutors filed an objection to the request for more time, arguing that the case is already almost 27 years old and should not languish any longer.

Superior Court Judge John Kavanewsky Jr. did not grant the full monthlong extension and instead postponed the case 19 days.

"This is the time we felt the Probation Department really needed, and the judge agreed with us," Sherman said.

Deputy Chief State's Attorney Christopher Morano said prosecutors were eager to make their case, regardless of the sentencing date.

"We are pleased that a certain date has been set and look forward to addressing our motions and the issue of Mr. Skakel's sentencing," Morano said.

The original July 19 sentencing was postponed to Aug. 9 after Kavanewsky consulted with Skakel's probation officer and determined the pre-sentence investigation needed more time.

Sherman has already filed three post-verdict motions, including a motion for a new trial, a motion to set aside the verdict and a motion for judgment of acquittal, arguing that the jury was influenced unfairly by harrowing photos of Moxley's beaten body. Those motions will be addressed at the sentencing.

Two Hartford-based attorneys, Hubert Santos and Hope Seeley, have been hired to handle Skakel's appeal.

After a four-week trial, Skakel was convicted June 7 of murdering Moxley, his 15-year-old neighbor in Belle Haven.

A jury determined that Skakel beat Moxley with a custom-made golf club that belonged to his deceased mother and bore her initials. That personalized part of the golf club has never been found.

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