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The Leavenworth Times - Leavenworth, KS
  • Manslaughter case won’t go to Supreme Court

  • With a new trial ordered in a manslaughter case, prosecutors don’t intend to appeal the matter to the Kansas Supreme Court.
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  • With a new trial ordered in a manslaughter case, prosecutors don’t intend to appeal the matter to the Kansas Supreme Court.
    That’s according to County Attorney Todd Thompson.
    “We’ll retry it if necessary,” Thompson said of the case of Monica Rivera.
    Rivera was convicted in August 2010 in Leavenworth County District Court of involuntary manslaughter and endangering a child. She later was sentenced to 41 months in prison.
    Rivera’s son, Gabriel, reportedly died in 2009 from blunt force trauma after he was left in the care of Rivera’s fiancé, Jason L. Jones. The boy was 4 years old.
    Jones was sentenced in 2010 to more than 38 years in prison for the second-degree murder of the boy.
    Last month, the Kansas Court of Appeals released a decision ordering a new trial in Rivera’s case. The judges of the Court of Appeals found that errors had been made in instructions provided to jurors.
    A month has passed since the release of the decision. Thompson said the appeal is not yet official, but he doesn’t believe prosecutors will be asking the Kansas Supreme Court to review the case.
    That means the case will return to Leavenworth County District Court for possibly another trial.
    During Rivera’s 2010 trial, the prosecution argued Jones had abused the boy prior to his death. And Rivera had endangered the boy by leaving him in Jones’ care.
    The defense argued Rivera had never seen Jones abuse the boy. And at least some of the injuries the boy suffered prior to his death resulted from accidents.
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