Possible retrial for convicted killer of LaPorte County teen

Published: Sep. 18, 2018 at 3:58 PM EDT
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Locked away almost four years ago, Jason Tibbs isn't finished fighting his murder conviction for the 1993 killing of Rayna Rison, his 16-year-old ex-girlfriend found dead in a LaPorte County pond.

Tibbs' new lawyers argue the jury in the 2014 trial wasn't allowed to hear key evidence after the judge sustained the prosecutors' objection to the original defense team's attempt to show a prosecution witness was coached by investigators.

Additionally, King says jurors were unable to hear about fiber evidence found in Rison's hair that would have linked the death to a family member, Raymond McCarty,


Tibbs' 2014 attorneys to ensure the aforementioned evidence was listed in the court record for an appeals judge to review.

"Our contention is that failure to put that evidence in the record, that failure to present and preserve that evidence was, number one, a breach of the duty to be what's called 'effective counsel,'" stated King.

On September 17, King and fellow petitioner Russell Brown appeared for a post-conviction release (PCR) hearing to begin the process of Tibbs potentially getting a new trial.

"Unfortunately, he was convicted by a jury that – through no fault of their own – didn’t have all the facts, and our contention is had they had all the facts, the outcome of the trial was likely to have been different," said King, by phone.

King expects to hear sometime after October 9 if Tibbs will be granted a new trial.