Hearing Set for Va. Death Row Inmate

November 3, 2010

A Virginia death row inmate who claims he was wrongly convicted in the murder-for-hire of his marijuana supplier will try to convince a Norfolk federal judge this week that he is innocent.

An evidentiary hearing for 29-year-old Justin Michael Wolfe is scheduled to begin Tuesday to consider the shooter's later claim that he acted alone in killing 21-year-old Daniel Petrole Jr. in 2001. The judge also will consider sworn statements from others who say Owen Barber IV told them he alone killed Petrole.

Barber was the key witness in Wolfe's 2002 trial. Barber agreed to plead guilty to first-degree murder and testify against Wolfe in exchange for a life sentence.

Barber recanted in 2005, but then changed his story again five months later.

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