Jeffrey Martinson

Jeffrey Martinson listens on during his trial in Superior Court Wednesday Aug, 23, 2011. Martinson is charged with the first-degree murder of his 4-year-old son back in 2004. Aug 23, 2011. Darryl Webb/AFN

Darryl Webb

A judge ordered a new trial in the case of Jeffrey Martinson, an Ahwatukee Foothills man accused of killing his 5-year-old son in August of 2004.

The case took seven years to go to trial, and now after months of argument it will go to trial all over again.

Joshua Eberle-Martinson was found dead inside his father’s apartment after a weekend visit in 2004. Jeffrey Martinson was found guilty by a jury in November of 2011, but when the jury came back hung on the penalty phase the judge agreed to hear arguments for a mistrial during a post-verdict evidentiary hearing.

Each jury member was called in separately to testify about what exactly took place during deliberations, something that is normally kept private. According to court documents the hearing revealed a bias on the part of the jury foreman, which “infected” the trial.

Judge Sally Duncan also stated in her ruling that testimony from the medical examiner as to the manner of death should not have been allowed in court and that the court erred in allowing that testimony to be heard.

Duncan ordered a new trial, setting the last day as May 21, 2012.

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