No new trial for man convicted of strangling ex-classmate
FREEHOLD, N.J. (AP) — A man convicted of strangling a former high school classmate and throwing her body off a bridge has lost his bid for a new trial.
Liam McAtasney’s lawyer cited several reasons why the request was warranted, including claims the trial was unfairly prejudiced by a Facebook post made in a juror’s name that included a flip comment about the trial. But Superior Court Judge Richard English rejected all the arguments in a ruling issued Friday, saying there was significant evidence to show the verdict wasn’t “a miscarriage of justice.”
McAtasney was convicted in February of murder and other counts. He faces a mandatory life term when he’s sentenced later this year.
Monmouth County prosecutors said McAtasney killed 19-year-old Sarah Stern during a December 2016 robbery. During the trial, they played a secretly recorded conversation in which he discussed Stern’s killing.