Greg Kelley case: How we got here

GEORGETOWN, Texas (KXAN) — A public hearing to present new evidence in the Greg Kelley case is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 2 in front of Judge Donna King. After a tumultuous and emotional four years, Kelley will once again be facing a judge to seek another chance at a new trial.

Kelley was originally convicted and sentenced to 25 years in prison for the sexual assault of a child in 2014. This spring, Kelley’s defense team was able to breathe new life into the case after they say there is another suspect that could have been responsible for the crimes. The Williamson County District Attorney decided to reopen the case after receiving “credible evidence” from Kelley’s attorneys. Now, that evidence will be brought forth to another judge.

Court records show Johnathan McCarty, 20, is the focus of the new investigation. Kelley’s attorneys claim he is the other possible suspect and the children might have gotten the two teenagers mixed up.

Here’s how the Greg Kelley, 22, case has evolved over the past few years and how his attorneys got it back in front of a judge:

How does Kelley know Johnathan McCarty? Kelley was living at the McCarty, now 20, household in 2013 while attending Leander High School. Kelley’s parents were ill at the time.

Why were there children around the McCarty home? McCarty’s mother ran an in-home daycare where the 4-year-old victim said he was assaulted.

What were the original accusations against Kelley? Two young boys who were at the home daycare said Kelley sexually assaulted them.

When was Kelley arrested? Aug. 12, 2013

When did the trial start? July 4, 2014

What happened during the trial? During trial, one of the boy’s said Kelley asked him to perform oral sex, and when he said “no”, Kelley “did it anyways.” The second boy in turn said he was never assaulted. 

When was he found guilty, how long did the jury deliberate and what did they convict him on? July 16, 2014. 11 hours. He was found guilty on two counts of super aggravated sexual assault against a child. He was found not guilty of indecency with a second child.

What was his sentence? Instead of a sentencing by jury, Kelley and his attorneys agreed to a plea deal that sentenced him to 25 years in prison for each of the three counts–served concurrently. He also surrendered his chances for an appeal. At the time, Kelley’s mother said the plea was a better option than the possibility of life in prison.

What were the defense’s next steps? With a new attorney, Keith Hampton, Kelley and his team field a motion for a retrial on Aug. 13, 2014. Hampton said filing a motion for a new trial is different than an appeal because it is handled by the trial court and not the Third Court of Appeals.

How did the State respond? The prosecution determined there was no need for a hearing for a new trial. On Aug. 18, 2014, the state concluded that the “Motion alleges no new evidence, let alone facts, that could support the defendant’s bare claims of innocence.”

What was the outcome of the appeal? On Sept. 23, 2014, Judge Larry Gist of Beaumont denied Kelley’s motion for a new trial. Gist writes that Kelley’s attorney’s motion for a new trial “does not show actual innocence of the defendant but only alleges facts that might show innocence. Again, there is no showing why such evidence was not produced at trial.” Kelley’s attorney then asked the appeals court to grant a hearing to present new evidence.

How did the Third Circuit Court of Appeals rule? On Feb. 11, 2016, the ThirdCircuit Court of Appeals decided there was insufficient information and evidence to grant a new hearing.

How did Kelley’s attorneys get the case reopened by the Williamson County District Attorney’s Office? By the end of May of this year, Williamson County DA Shawn Dick said he reopened the investigation into Kelley’s sexual assault case after saying he received “credible evidence” from Kelley’s defense claiming another person was responsible for the crime.

What is the new evidence? Court records show Johnathan McCarty, 20, is the focus of the new investigation. Kelley’s attorneys claim he is the other possible suspect and the children might have gotten the two teenagers mixed up.

When was Kelley brought back to Williamson County Jail? After nearly three years in prison, Kelley was booked back into the Williamson County Jail on June 6, 2017 to await his new hearing.

What happens next? After the hearing—which is expected to last two days—the judge will determine if there is enough evidence that warrants a new trial.

Could Kelley be cleared? Yes, it is possible. But Williamson Co. DA Shawn Dick says a ruling shouldn’t be expected for several weeks after the hearing.

What happens if the judge determines there is no merit to Kelley’s new claims? It is expected that his attorney would continue to get it heard by the Court of Criminal Appeals.

KXAN.com will not be live streaming the court proceedings following a request from the court. 

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