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New date scheduled after mistrial in Gary murder case
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New date scheduled after mistrial in Gary murder case

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CROWN POINT — A new trial is scheduled for the 34-year-old man charged with murder in a shootout last summer in Gary.

Rickey O'Neal Smith Jr. is scheduled to appear at trial in Lake Criminal Court beginning Feb. 12. A pretrial conference is scheduled for Jan. 25.

Smith again invoked his rights to a speedy trial on allegations he murdered Clarence Thornton on June 28, 2016, outside Smith's home in the 300 block of Mount Street in Gary.

Smith's defense attorney, Jamise Perkins, claimed at a trial for Smith last week that her client shot Thornton in self-defense. 

That trial ended in a mistrial Friday after several jurors reported seeing Smith in handcuffs, which is considered prejudicial.

Judge Diane Boswell ruled Tuesday that Smith could file a petition seeking to be released on bond while awaiting the new trial.

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Lake County Courts and Social Justice Reporter

Steve covers Lake County courts and social justice issues for The Times. The UW-Milwaukee graduate joined The Times in 2016 after reporting on criminal justice in New Mexico and Wisconsin.

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