An Alabama woman arrested in 2007 on charges of solicitation of murder has yet to find justice. Even though the charges against 32-year-old Shana R. Cromwell were dismissed last year by Autauga County Circuit Judge Ben Fuller, the Prattville resident is still awaiting a final decision in her case. She remains free on $50,000 bond.
Accused of a murder-for-hire plot against her ex-husband two years ago this June, Cromwell's case was all but thrown out by Judge Fuller last year after she renounced her intention to have her ex-husband, Michael Flynn, killed. But the local district attorney recently appealed Fuller's ruling, which was followed by Alabama's criminal appeals court overturning that previous decision and sending the case back to the lower court.
According to reports, the appeals court decided that whether Cromwell renounced her intention "should be left to the jury." Because of this, Cromwell has asked for a re-hearing. Following this latest appeal, the defense will have to let the law run its course until the Cromwell is either released or tried for solicitation of murder.
As a practicing Birmingham Criminal Defense Attorney, I am very familiar with cases such as Ms. Cromwell's. No matter what the situation, a person in her shoes needs a qualified criminal defense lawyer who knows the law inside and out. The facts in this case are hard to ignore, but not insurmountable.
Cromwell, who lives on Cedar Ridge Road in Prattville, was arrested on June 28, 2007, after she allegedly met with an undercover Alabama Bureau of Investigation (ABI) agent who was posing as a hit man. The meeting took place on June 15, 2007, when the two allegedly discussed the murder of Cromwell's ex-husband. She was indicted five months later on November 14, 2007, according to court records.
Last week, on May 12, the courthouse in Prattville received documentation stating that Cromwell had asked the appeals court to change its ruling. According to Cromwell's attorney, the defense is seeking a re-hearing. If that is unsuccessful, they will appeal to the Alabama Supreme Court. According to her lawyer, even the state's own case agent said she renounced her intention to solicit the murder of her ex-husband.
Renouncing the intention to have someone killed is a defense and would result in the charge being dropped. But there exists a difference of opinion between the defense and prosecution as to the interpretation of what the ABI agent testified to, putting this case into limbo until the appellate process has been completed.
If you or a loved one has been accused or arrested of a crime, Eversole Law recommends that you seek a seasoned legal professional for your defense. Our experienced staff is ready to help you fight for your rights under the law. Call us today for a free, no-obligation consultation at (866) 831-5292.
Murder-for-hire case sent back to lower court, MontgomeryAdvertiser.com, May 13, 2009