WASHINGTON (AP) — A judge has been holding secret hearings in the case of the man convicted in the 2001 killing of Chandra Levy, the latest twist in a high-profile murder that went unsolved for years and captivated the public because of the intern’s romantic relationship with a California congressman.
The meetings, held sporadically behind closed doors at the courthouse over the last several weeks, raise questions about what comes next in a criminal case that appeared resolved by the 2010 conviction of Ingmar Guandique. The illegal immigrant from El Salvador is now serving a 60-year prison sentence in Levy’s death, but the hearings could signal a problem with the prosecution of the case.
Authorities acknowledged they had no DNA evidence or witnesses linking Guandique to the crime, building their prosecution instead around a jailhouse informant who said Guandique had confessed behind bars that he was responsible for Levy’s death. They also said the attack on Levy fit a pattern of assaults by Guandique on other female joggers in the same location where she went missing and during the same timeframe.
Guandique, who was already imprisoned for those attacks when he was accused in Levy’s death in 2009, professed innocence at his sentencing hearing. His lawyers said police and prosecutors made him a scapegoat for a botched investigation.
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