A Carthage man, who was sentenced to life in prison for murdering his two-year-old son, is asking the Missouri Supreme Court to hear his appeal.
The motion to transfer was filed today.
The Southern District Court of Appeals, in a 2-1 vote September 15, rejected Eddie Salazar's bid to have his guilty verdict tossed out. It was the second time the panel rejected a Salazar appeal.
Salazar's attorney claimed his client was penalized when Judge Gayle Crane did not allow the public to attend jury selection for the trial, which was held March 12-14, 2012. Her decision was made because of the large number of prospective jurors that had to be called because of pretrial publicity did not leave any room for the public to attend.The subsequent trial was open to the public.
Salazar's lawyer also claimed his previous attorney had offered ineffective counsel by not objecting to evidence that Salazar had served time in prison and had a gang tattoo.
The murder of Salazar's son, Eddie Salazar, Jr., is described in this passage from the appellate court's opinion:
On the evening of February 4, 2010, Salazar’s son, while in Salazar’s care, died from blunt force trauma to the head. Salazar then threw his son’s body into a nearby river. He staged cuts and scrapes on himself to make it appear as though he had been in a fight. Salazar then called authorities and claimed that two men had entered his home and kidnapped his son. After Salazar gave several contradictory versions of what happened, his son’s body was found in the river, and Salazar was charged by amended information as a prior offender for the class A felony of second-degree murder.