Mo. Supreme Court affirms Bowman's murder conviction, reverses death row sentence

Apr 12, 2011

The Missouri Supreme Court has affirmed the murder conviction for Gregory Bowman, but reversed the sentence that put him on death row.

The court ruled today that St. Louis County jurors should not have heard about Bowman's two prior murder convictions during sentencing because those convictions were overturned.

One of Bowman's attorneys, Katie Hummel, said they were pleased with that portion of the court's ruling, but disappointed the high court did not overturn Bowman's conviction.

"We still strongly believe in Mr. Bowman's innocence," Hummel said. "At this point we're not sure what the next step will be. We're still talking about it."

Soon after Bowman was released from Illinois prison in 2007,  St. Louis County police obtained his DNA profile and matched it to the 1977 killing of 16-year-old Velda Rumfelt.

Bowman was convicted in that case in December 2009 and sentenced to death.
     
In the ruling, the Supreme Court remanded the case back to the trial court for re-sentencing.

It wasn't immediately clear if prosecutors would try again for the death penalty.