Missouri woman's 2009 murder conviction overturned

Friday, June 10, 2011 | 11:09 a.m. CDT

OZARK — A judge has overturned a southwest Missouri woman's 2009 murder conviction because of a legal violation by the Christian County prosecutor's office.

The Springfield News-Leader reported Thursday that Judge John Moody overturned the conviction of Paula Hall of Sparta because the jury in her trial was not told about a witness' criminal history.

Hall was found guilty in the 2003 death of Freda Heyn of Oldfield. The 68-year-old Heyn disappeared from the Oldfield post office. Her skull was found in 2004 in Mark Twain National Forest.

In a separate case, murder charges against Hall's former brother-in-law, Billy W. Hall, were dismissed Thursday.

Billy Hall was charged in 2006 with kidnapping and second-degree murder in Heyn's death. Police say charges were dropped to allow more time to gather evidence.

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