Attorneys mum on reason for mistrial in Mississippi killing
GREENWOOD, Miss. (AP) — Attorneys would not immediately say why a Mississippi judge declared a mistrial in the case of a man charged with killing his wife.
Edward Broom was arrested in January 2016 in Manhattan, Kansas, where he had moved after his wife, Lakeyla Broom, was killed in the couple’s home in Greenwood, Mississippi, in September 2014.
Circuit Judge Carol White-Richard declared a mistrial Wednesday, the Greenwood Commonwealth reported. The defense can seek a mistrial based on improper procedure or improper handling of evidence by prosecutors, or a mistrial can caused by jury tampering or prejudice, or jurors speaking to the media.
“I was just heartbroken when they called me to say it was a mistrial,” said Maggie Foreman of Greenwood, Lakeyla Broom’s grandmother, told the newspaper. “It’s been three years we’ve been waiting.”
District Attorney Tim Jones had said during opening arguments that Lakeyla Broom had up to 80 knife wounds. He said he will retry Edward Broom early next year.
The judge said she will decide later whether Broom can be released from jail while waiting for the second trial.
On the morning police found Lakeyla Broom’s body in the master bedroom of their home, Edward Broom was found lying on the bed, bound at the hands and feet with duct tape and electrical cords. He made the 911 call on her cellphone.
Greenwood Police Lt. Jeri Bankston, the investigator in the case, was on the witness stand Wednesday confirming for Jones pieces of evidence she collected at the scene of the crime.
After hours testifying about evidence found at the scene — bloody knives, stains on the bedroom wall, bedclothes, duct tape and other items swabbed for DNA — Bankston was asked to describe what led her to determine Edward Broom had a motive in the case. She said Lakeyla Broom was involved in an extramarital relationship with a Greenwood man and was with him the day before the killing.
Asked why that man was not considered a suspect, Bankston said his alibi for the night of the killing — attending a movie in another city with his girlfriend — checked out.
The defense objected to some phrasing of Bankston’s answers, but White-Richard did not block the testimony as evidence. After a break, the judge declared the mistrial.