Trial starts for man suing highway patrol sergeant who investigated his case

Local News

SPRINGFIELD, Mo.–A Missouri Highway Patrol Investigator is on trial this morning (2/18/2020) after being accused of suppressing evidence in a murder case.

Brad Jennings of Buffalo spent nearly nine years in prison for the death of his wife, Lisa. New evidence set Jennings free and erased his conviction. Now he’s striking back at one of the men who put him behind bars.

KOLR 10’s David Oliver has covered this case extensively since 2017.

Brad Jennings is suing Highway Patrol Sargent Dan Nash for violating his civil rights.

Jury selection is underway inside the federal courthouse for this trial, which we expect to go about five days.

Early this morning, Jennings and his attorney’s along with attorney’s from the state, made their way into the federal courthouse here in Springfield.

At issue, a gunshot residue test on a robe that Brad Jennings wore the night of his wife’s death. It showed no gunshot residue on the robe, suggesting Jennings never fired a gun.

His defense team was never given the results of that testing, and it was only years later it was discovered.

Jennings and his lawyers believe Sargent Dan Nash intentionally withheld this evidence that could have changed the outcome of the trial in which he was convicted.

Keep in mind the night Jennings’ wife died three Dallas County agencies ruled her death a suicide.

This morning both sides met with federal Judge Willie Epps Jr., who’s been brought in to hear this case.

They started the process to seat a jury at 9 a.m.

Each side will get 30 minutes for opening statements before witnesses take the stand.

We know Jennings’ team plans to call upwards of 15 witnesses and the state at least five witnesses.

No cameras are allowed in the court, but KOLR 10 will be inside the courtroom today, and as long as it goes.

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