State Prosecuting Attorney seeks extension to review Nisbett murder case

Rex Nisbett (KXAN Photo)
Rex Nisbett (KXAN Photo)

WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) — The State Prosecuting Attorney is asking for an extension with the Court of Criminal Appeals, after the reversal of Rex Nisbett’s murder conviction back in December. The extension would be used by the agency to review the case before deciding if they want to file an appeal.

The State Prosecuting Attorney represents the people of Texas before the Court of Criminal Appeals, the State’s highest criminal court

In June 2014, a jury found Nisbett, 55, guilty in the cold case murder of his wife Vicki, despite the fact investigators never found her body. Nisbett was sentenced to 42 years in prison for the 1991 murder.

The court found on Dec. 15, 2016 that there was “reversible error” in the trial court’s judgement of conviction.

An appeal from the judgment of conviction filed on Dec. 15 said, “Having reviewed the record and the parties’ arguments, the Court holds that there was reversible error in the trial court’s judgment of conviction. Therefore, the Court reverses the trial court’s judgment of conviction and renders a judgment of acquittal. Appellant is discharged from all further liability for the offense of murder as charged in the indictment.”

At the time, Nisbett’s defense team said, “The case should never have been prosecuted. Rex Nisbett is innocent and District Attorney Jana Duty should never have brought these charges against him with the thin circumstantial evidence.”

Vicki Nisbett

Vicki Nisbett

The Court of Criminal Appeals can decide whether to hear the case. If the court decides to hear the appeal, reviewing the case could take up to a year, according to Dick.

A defense attorney for Nisbett, Kristen Jernigan, released a statement in response to the State Prosecuting Attorney’s announcement: “I think the court of appeals opinion was very well reasoned and followed the law to a T. I would expect that the State Prosecuting Attorney would come to the same decision and any further appeal of this case would be a waste of taxpayer resources.”

Nisbett is currently imprisoned at the Coffield prison, southeast of Dallas. Unless he is able to pay his portion of a $250,000 appeal bond, he is expected to remain in prison. His original projected release date was March 2055.

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