The Craigslist Killer is appealing his death sentence to the Ohio Supreme Court, saying the huge swell of national publicity deprived him of a fair trial in Summit County.
The high court will hear oral arguments next week from Richard Beasley, one of two people convicted in the murders of three men lured to a southeastern Ohio farm with job postings on Craigslist.org in 2011.
Beasley was convicted in 2013 of three murders, attempted murder of another man, robbery, kidnapping and other charges and sentenced to death. His co-defendant Brogan Rafferty, who was a minor at the time, was convicted in 2012 and sentenced to life in prison without parole.
Beasley advertised a farm caretaker job on Craiglist. When Ralph Geiger of Akron, David Pauley of Virginia and Tim Kern of Massillon responded to the job ad, Beasley shot them in the head.
A fourth man, Scott Davis, of South Carolina, escaped when he was shot in the elbow. Davis ran for help and police began investigating.
In his appeal to the Ohio Supreme Court, Beasley is making 11 legal arguments to challenge his convictions and sentence, including improper use of hearsay testimony against him and pre-trial publicity prejudiced the jury in the case.
The Ohio Attorney General’s office maintains that the hearsay evidence was admissible and Beasley never raised concerns at the time of trial about the publicity surrounding the case.
The case, which was investigated by the FBI, generated international headlines.
Rafferty, now 22, is incarcerated at Mansfield Correctional Institution. Beasley, 58, is on Death Row at Chillicothe Correctional Institution.