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Ramsey lawyer appealing first-degree murder charge

January 10, 2020 News Extra

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Ishemer Ramsey was sentenced to life for the 2017 murder of Melissa Barto at the beginning of December.

A lawyer for Ishemer Ramsey is asking a Butler County judge to reverse his ruling that his client killed Melissa Barto, his girlfriend, in 2017. Now, a hearing is scheduled at the end of this month to discuss the matter.

On Dec. 2, Judge William Shaffer sentenced Ramsey, 24, to life in prison for homicide and other charges after finding him guilty of killing Barto. But in a recent court filing, Ramsey's lawyer, Christopher Capozzi, asked Shaffer for a judgment of acquittal.

Capozzi argued the “prosecutor's misconduct was so pervasive and prejudicial” that it denied Ramsey's right to a fair trial. The arguments in the motion were originally made before Shaffer arrived at his guilty verdict, with Capozzi taking several opportunities during the four-day trial to accuse the Butler Count District Attorney's Office of prosecutorial misconduct.

In Capozzi's postsentence motion, he also argues that Shaffer's finding of first-degree murder against Ramsey was incorrect.

This is an excerpt from a larger article that will appear in Sunday's Butler Eagle. Subscribe online or in print to read the full article for other reasons why Ramsey is appealing the decision.

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