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Conviction: Solving the Moxley Murder: A Reporter and a Detective's Twenty-Year Search for Justice

On October 30, 1975, fifteen-year-old Martha Moxley headed home from Halloween Eve antics with her Greenwich, Connecticut, neighbors Tommy and Michael Skakel. She never made it. Her brutal murder with a golf club in her own backyard made national headlines. After the police department's first unsuccessful attempts to catch the killer, the case lay dormant, and the culprit remained free. In 1982, the Stamford Advocate and Greenwich Time newspapers asked investigative reporter Leonard Levitt to look into the murder and rumors of a cover-up. Levitt uncovered information about how the police had bungled the investigation, and that Tommy and Michael had lied about their activities. For years, Levitt's superiors refused to publish the stories. Finally, after Levitt's first article appeared, the case was reopened.

Frank Garr the new investigator on the case, pursued unexplored leads and became convinced that his colleagues had been pursuing the wrong suspects. Levitt and Garr encouraged each other in their quest for the truth.

In 2002, Michael Skakel was convicted due largely to the evidence Garr alone marshaled against him.

Levitt tells the amazing story of Garr's fight to solve the case and their friendship with Martha's mother, Dorthy, sustained them. A riveting, suspenseful drama that unfolds like a mystery.


Greenwich, Connecticut

Martha Moxley, 15, Greenwich CT, went out for some pre Halloween shenanigans October 30, 1975. Martha's Story -- The night before Halloween was commonly known as "mischief night" or "doorbell night". Martha and her friends set out for an night of harmless pranks; spraying shaving cream, throwing eggs and toilet paper around the neighborhood before stopping at the home of Tommy and Michael Skakel, the nephews of Ethel Kennedy, widow of the late N.Y. Sen. Robert F. Kennedy.. The next day, Martha was found beaten to death in her own back yard, the blows inflicted with a golf club. Michael said in a book proposal that he tried to kiss her on the fatal night.

Before the trial, a business owner in Miami, Tres Mills, former classmate of Tony and Michael at Brunswick School in Greenwich, said two friends were the killers. He gave this information to the prosecutors and Michael's former defense lawyer, Mickey Sherman. Tony claims Tres and his friends picked up golf clubs in the Skakel yard to attack a girl "caveman style." They were talking about Martha. Tony wanted no part of it and left Belle Haven shortly after 9 p.m. to return by train to New York. He learned of Martha's murder the next day, and his friends admitted their role.

Prosecutors ask the jury to consider lesser charges against Skakel -- The prosecutors want the jury to consider manslaughter in the 1st degree by reason of extreme emotional disturbance. This is not insanity, it's passion, grief, anger, an intense feeling. Manslaughter one explains why a murder happened, and is usually asked for by the defense. With murder, the state has the burden of proof, but with manslaughter defense has the burden of proof.

The Sutton Report -- Report allegedly commissioned in 1992 from Sutton Associates, a detective agency, by Rushton Skakel, Michael's father, to investigate the murder.

The Murder Case That Just Wouldn't Go Away -- What may have held back the investigation also may have been what kept it going.

25 years after Martha was beaten to death with a golf club, her neighbor, Michael, stood accused. He maintained his innocence, but former classmates say he confessed to the shocking crime. A former resident of a Maine reform school Michael Skakel attended in the 1970's told her his brother had a romantic encounter with his 'girlfriend.'

27 years after the murder of Martha, there is a verdict.. Follow the case and learn about key figures in this case.

Michael was tried on virtually no evidence and convicted for the murder of Martha and sentenced to 20 years to life in prison. The van is pulled way from the courthouse with Michael shackled. He is being taken to Bridgeport Correctional Facility, people clapped as the van left.

For prosecutors, it came down to tale of tapes

The Case Timeline

Full Trial and Case Update

Dorothy, John Moxley Discuss Skakel's Sentence.

Update: Ghosts of Greenwich -- Robert Kennedy Jr. talks about new clues and possible new suspects in the murder. Two young men were allegedly in the gated Belle Haven community in Greenwich, Conn., the night of the murder. He also elicited details from Bryant. New Clues In Moxley Case

Hope Seeley, defense lawyer for Skakel said September 6, 2003, her client will seek a new trial based on new evidence focusing on Gitano "Tony" Bryant, cousin of NBA player Kobe Bryant.

Defense Seeks New Trial

Kari & Associates
PO Box 6166
Olympia, WA 98507

Copyright Kari Sable 1994-2006

American Justice: Martha Moxley

City Confidential - Greenwich: Who Killed Martha Moxley Murder, wealth, power, a famous family--all are part of the Martha Moxley homicide in Greenwich, Connecticut. Martha's 1975 murder was linked to Tommy and Michael Skakel, nephew to Ethel Kennedy, which some think led police and the media to back away from an aggressive investigation. But the case has been recently reopened.

Cracking More Cases: The Forensic Science of Solving Crimes : the Michael Skakel-Martha Moxley Case, the Jonbenet Ramsey Case and Many More! Dr. Henry C. Lee forensic criminalist gained recognition through high-profile cases, including the O. J. trial. Dr. Lee describes in detail investigating five homicide cases. The Skakel-Moxley case- remained unsolved for three decades, until Dr. Lee and two other professionals were charged with reinvestigating the case. In May 2002, Dr.Lee's testimony focused on crime scene reconstruction and "indirect forensic evidence."

The murder of six-year-old JonBenet Ramsey in 1996 creates media speculation, because authorities bungled the evidence. Dr. Lee was asked to help with the inquiry. He discusses the complexities of this case. Lee describes three other murder cases-Concetta "Penney" Serra, Lisa Peng, and Suzan Barratt.


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