NEW ORLEANS (AP) – Lawyers have appealed the conviction of a man serving a 25-year sentence in the death of retired New Orleans Saints star Will Smith.
Cardell Hayes’ lawyer says the trial judge should have granted a new trial because a witness reached the day after Hayes’ conviction said he’d heard two guns at the time of the shooting. That would buttress Hayes’ claim of self-defense.
The appeal filed Thursday also contends that Judge Camille Buras should have allowed testimony about Smith’s 2010 arrest on a charge of domestic abuse. Attorney Paul Barker says this would have shown Smith could be violent when drunk.
District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro released a statement Friday saying prosecutors proved Hayes’ guilt. He also says the appeal contains falsehoods, which shows he hasn’t begun rehabilitation.