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Plans to tear down old Cole County jail and sheriff's house move forward April 16, 2014

Swift ruling expected in appeal of Allen verdict

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Lawyers for a 56-year-old St. Louis man whose rape and murder conviction was recently overturned by a Cole County judge expect a quick ruling on the state’s appeal of that decision.

George Allen Jr. spent nearly three decades in prison for the 1982 death of Mary Bell but has been free since mid-November. He was released after Circuit Judge Daniel Green in Jefferson City ruled that St. Louis police misled the mentally ill man into a false confession and hid or destroyed evidence casting doubt on his guilt.

Attorney General Chris Koster is challenging Green’s ruling before the Missouri Court of Appeals. But defense attorney Ameer Gado says the appellate court has waived its own hearing and will instead formally take the case under consideration starting Thursday.

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