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New trial set for Mississippi man in killing of 2-year-old

A Mississippi man faces a new trial in the killing of his girlfriend’s 2-year-old daughter.

WDAM-TV reports the retrial of Justin Blakeney is set for September in Neshoba County.

Circuit Court Judge Dal Williamson approved attorneys’ request for the trial to be moved from Jones County, where Victoria Viner was killed in 2010. She was the daughter of Lidia Viner, Blakeney’s girlfriend at the time.

Jurors for his 2014 trial were chosen in Greene County and taken to Jones County. Blakeney was convicted of capital murder, sentenced to death and sent to prison.

In November 2017, the Mississippi Supreme Court ordered a new trial, ruling Blakeney was denied the opportunity to present a complete defense.

Since December 2017, he has been in protective custody at the Jones County jail.


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