CINCINNATI – A federal appeals court has overturned the conviction and death penalty of an Ohio man accused of beating his roommate and burying him alive, finding police coerced his confession.
A panel of the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati made the ruling Thursday in the case of Toledo resident Archie Dixon. He was convicted in Lucas County in the 1993 slaying of Christopher Hammer.
The ruling overturned a 2004 Ohio Supreme Court decision that had upheld the use of Dixon's confession in his trial despite a police decision not to initially read Dixon his rights.
The appeals court ruling says police planned to get a murder confession by not advising Dixon of his rights initially. The court has given prosecutors six months to retry Dixon.
Dixon's attorney says he's "very pleased" with the decision.