05/26/2011

Supreme Court overturns conviction in 1998 killing of police officer

The high court on Thursday said the lower court should reconsider the conviction of Charles Fowler, who was given life in prison for the shooting death of officer Todd Horner

Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court has overturned the conviction of a man who fatally shot a police officer in Florida in 1998.

The high court on Thursday said the lower court should reconsider the conviction of Charles Fowler, who was given life in prison for the shooting death of officer Todd Horner.

Fowler was convicted under a federal law that bans people from trying to keep U.S. officials from being informed about a potential federal crime. Horner was killed when he approached a group of men who were planning a bank robbery.

Fowler's lawyers said prosecutors never proved Horner would have alerted federal authorities to a potential federal crime.

Justices agreed that proof is needed under that law, and sent the case back.

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