Death penalty set aside again for Stumpf

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A federal appeals court has once again set aside the death sentence of a man condemned to die for killing a woman during a 1984 robbery in Muskingum County.

Thursday's decision by the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals confirms the court's 2004 decision that the death sentence for John Stumpf was flawed because prosecutors told
conflicting stories of his involvement in the killing.

The U.S. Supreme Court has previously upheld Stumpf's conviction.

The state is deciding whether to hold a new sentencing hearing for Stumpf, who was sentenced to death for killing Mary Jane Stout in New Concord.

The appeals court said it was improper for prosecutors to argue that Stumpf shot Stout yet contend at a separate trial that Stumpf's companion was the triggerman.