Laci Peterson went missing on Christmas Eve 2002 while she was eight months pregnant with their son she had named Connor. Scott Peterson claimed that she was killed sometime after he left their Modesto, California home on the morning of December 24th, 2002, to go fishing in the San Francisco Bay. He soon became a prime suspect following growing police and public suspicion.
After months of jury selection and then a trial, Scott was convicted on Nov. 12, 2004 of first-degree murder of Laci Peterson and second-degree murder of Connor Peterson.
Scott Peterson, 50, and his legal team had argued that a juror in his 2004 murder trial, Richelle Nice, committed misconduct and bid for a new trial.
His attorneys alleged that Nice lied on a pre-trail questionnaire and argued she was biased against him.
In Tuesday’s ruling, San Mateo County Superior Court Judge Anne-Christine Massullo wrote that the court concluded that “Juror No. 7’s (Nice) responses (on the questionnaire) were not motivated by pre-existing or improper bias against petitioner (Peterson), but instead were the result of a combination of good faith misunderstanding of the questions and sloppiness in answering.”
Pat Harris, an attorney for Peterson, did not immediately return Rolling Stone‘s request for comment. Harris told CBS News in a statement that “this case is not over” and said that they had new evidence that allegedly proves Peterson did not murder his wife.
Harris added that he “respectfully” disagreed with the judge’s decision that Nice did not commit misconduct.
“Jury questionnaires and the attorneys who read them depend on the honesty of the answers in order to get a fair trial,” Harris continued in his statement via CBS News. “It will make it difficult if jurors believe they can lie and there will be no repercussions.”
Two years after the California Supreme Court overturned his death sentence, Peterson was moved off death row in October and transferred to Sacramento’s Mule Creek State Prison.