MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - A man accused of killing a Memphis police officer is back on trial more than a decade after his conviction. The court of appeals overturned the conviction of Timothy McKinney after judges found he didn't get a fair trial.
This is hard for friends and family of both the murdered police officer and the man on trial. They're going through a murder trial not once, but twice.
Tim McKinney walked into the courtroom hoping this trial doesn't end like his previous one. In 1999 McKinney was sentenced to death for the murder of Memphis officer Don Williams.
McKinney's lawyers say from the beginning, police got the wrong guy.
The shooting happened on December 26, 1997. Williams was working security at a Frayser comedy club along with fellow officer, Frank Lee. Prosecutors say both officers had a run in with McKinney before the shooting, when McKinney thought someone stole his car and he became irate.
Not long after that prosecutors say McKinney shot Williams; Lee was standing a few feet away.
The defense says McKinney has waited more than a decade for his side of the story to be revealed.
Jurors will not be told about the previous court case and conviction. But family members of Don Williams say being back in the courtroom and reliving the former police officer's murder is horrid. Williams' wife was on the stand again testifying about her husband dying in the hospital.
McKinney's lawyers plan to poke holes in eyewitness statements and hope the passage of time is on their side.
The murdered officer's family says if jurors decide McKinney is not guilty only one word will describe their emotions: heartbroken.