The defense has filed a post hearing brief in the recent degree of guilt hearing for Richard Payne.
Defense lawyer Eric Hackwelder wrote that he doesn’t believe the commonwealth has proved to beyond a reasonable doubt that Payne intentionally killed his student Debbie Gama in the 1970’s.
In the seven page brief, the defense believes the court cannot find the death accidental, which the commonwealth argued on June 25th of this year.
Hackwelder is asking Payne’s conviction be ruled to the lesser charge of third-degree murder which lead to him being released from prison.
Judge Daniel Brabender has yet to file a brief following the degree of of guilt hearing.