No New Trial For Convicted Murderer Don Johns Of Casper
A Casper man convicted of murder, will not get a new trial despite his attorney's claims that prosecutors didn't prove their case in court.
Natrona County District Court Judge Catherine Wilking denied a motion of acquittal and a motion for a new trial for Don Johns, who was convicted by a jury of first degree murder, in the August 2015 death of Donald Wickersham.
Johns' attorneys contested that Natrona County Prosecutors had insufficient evidence to prove premeditated malice.
Their argument was that Wickersham had threatened Johns first and was holding two knives in one hand and a hatchet in another.
Prosecutors counter-argued that Johns and Wickersham had been arguing earlier in the day according to witnesses, which shows motive (there were no witnesses at the actual time of the stabbing).
On top of that, there were two separate weapons used, which shows a level of planning activity.
During the trial, there was testimony from one person that Johns' admitted to him that he attacked Wickersham, by way of taking a sword away from Wickersham, stabbed Wickersham several times, went to clean the sword, heard Wickersham make a sound, and then returned and stabbed him several more times.
Prosecutors say that is sufficient evidence to sustain the jury's verdict.
Wickersham was stabbed a total of 29 times, and Johns claimed to Casper Police that he was acting in self-defense.
Johns is being held without bond and will be sentenced at a later date.
He could be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.