Attorney for accused Campbell school shooter wants new trial moved

1:07 PM, Jul 12, 2013   |    comments
Kenneth Bartley
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The attorney for a Campbell County teen who once plead guilty to killing an assistant principal is asking that a new trial be moved to another county.

In his motion, Attorney Greg Isaacs argues that "The sensational facts of this case in addition to the unique legal developments have led to continuous inflammatory and prejudicial media coverage that has permeated the small community of Campbell County and surrounding areas in East Tennessee."

In November 2005, investigators say Kenneth Bartley, who was only 14 at the time, brought a loaded gun to Campbell County high school.  In the school office, Assistant Principal Ken Bruce was shot and killed.  Principal Gary Seale and Assistant Principal Jim Pierce were wounded.

Bartley was arrested and charged as an adult, but before his trial began, he pleaded guilty in exchange for a 45 year prison sentence.

In 2011, a judge ordered Bartley's guilty plea thrown out, after his attorney argued that he had been pressured into the plea and didn't have the time to discuss it with his parents.

The media has followed the developments in this case, and Isaacs believes that will make it impossible to find an impartial jury in Campbell County.  He also cites the size of the county, and the fact that almost all the residents have some sort of connection to the high school where the shooting happened.


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