Prosecutor had evidence but comments spoil conviction

JACKSON (AP) - A prosecutor's provocative comments about a man charged with dealing heroin have spoiled the conviction in Jackson County.

The Michigan appeals court this week ordered a new trial for Keante Kiya, who was sentenced to eight years in prison. The court cited statements by assistant prosecutor Jake Dickerson during his remarks to the jury.

Dickerson said Kiya was selling "poison on our streets to make money." He described him as a "dealer of death," and he urged jurors to do something about the Jackson-area's heroin crisis. The appeals court says the prosecutor "took special care to deliberately arouse" the emotions of jurors.

Judges Michael Kelly and Deborah Servitto called it "manifestly improper." Judge Mark Boonstra disagreed, saying a new trial wasn't necessary, even if some statements were inappropriate.

Published: Fri, Apr 26, 2019