Misskelley, Baldwin Back in Court for Rule 37 Hearings

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) -- For the second session of their rule 37 hearing Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley are hopeful.

Misskelley's former attorney, now judge Dan Stidham was back on the stand Wednesday for cross examination by the prosecution.

Stidham said at the time of the trial he had never served as the leading lawyer in a capital murder trial. He said at the time of this case back in 1993 he thought it would plea out.  He said never expected it go to trial so he didn't think his amount of experience would be a problem.

Christopher Byers step-father Mark Byers said he thinks the defense was, in his words, "inadequate".

"In my opinion he was in over his head and probably didn't know it.  Didn't know how deep the water was before he jumped in it," said Byers.

A big part of the day was a video taped interview from December 10, 1993 which was recorded by Stidham.  The tape shows Misskelley and Stidham sitting at a desk talking about the case and what had happened so far.  For over an hour the court watched the taped interview where Misskelley answered questions about what he understood about the case and what he did and did not understand at the time.

This tape is something Byers said shows the true confusion of a then teenage boy.

"It doesn't match the crime scene.  His stories don't match the facts and then to watch that young boy in there as confused as he was to not know the difference between a lie detector and a polygraph test," said Byers.

Stidham is expected to take the stand again Thursday morning to finish his testimony.