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Panel of judges to decide on Denise Williams' conviction appeal

Posted at 5:27 PM, Jan 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-22 17:27:29-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Lawyers for the woman convicted of orchestrating her husband's murder hoping to get her set free.

Denise Williams was convicted in 2018 of her husband Mike Williams' murder in 2000. Williams lawyers want her to either be released or get a retrial.

Her appellate attorneys argued that the jury never heard of anything that Denise Williams said or did that proved she worked with Brian Winchester.

He's the former best friend of her husband, convicted in his death.

They also picked out a moment in the states rebuttal during that first trial when prosecutors focused on Denise Williams' demeanor both after the murder and during the trial.

The prosecutor on that case said that calling out her demeanor was "fair game."

"It could except for the fact that they invited that comment. They made the comment first. When you do that, it’s called opening the door," said Jon Fuchs, the state prosecutor on the case. "They don’t get to make a comment on something and then tell the state that they can’t make a comment. It goes against a rebuttal. They chose for strategy reasons to make a comment on her stone face in court and I rebutted that."

The attorney general's office maintains that Denise Williams planned her husband's death with her boyfriend. They say she convinced mike Williams to go duck hunting with Brian Winchester knowing that he had plans to kill Williams on that trip.

Now, a three judge panel will go over Wednesday's oral arguments. There's no timeline for when they have to come back with an answer.