Murder convictions overturned, Hardin, Clark head back to court

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- After 20 years in jail, their murder convictions were overturned, but could two local men be headed back to prison?

Back in August, we were the first to tell you about the convictions of Keith Hardin and Jeffrey Clark being thrown out.

However both men now face new charges in the 20-year-old case.

“Let the record reflect that 16CR131 vs. Garr Keith Hardin Jr, let the record  reflect  that he is here with council, has received a copy of the indictment,” said Judge Butler.  “Council has waived a formal reading of the indictment and has entered a not guilty plea for his client.”

Since their release Clark has been working at an auto body shop in Frankfort, which was too close to the Commonwealth Attorney’s office for Assistant Commonwealth Attorney Perry Ryan who sent a letter to the court that he felt threatened.

“We in no way attempted to threaten Mr. Ryan by sending that motion,” said Clark’s attorney.

Since both men are charged with Class A felonies, which carry a minimum sentence of 20 years to life, for the 1995 kidnapping of Rhonda Warford, the prosecutor in this case asked that their bonds be increased--potentially sending them back to jail.

“I will set bond like his other bond,” said Judge Butler. “This bond will be the same as the other case.”

Since both men have already served 20 years in prison there is a chance neither man will ever spend another day in jail even if convicted of Warford’s kidnapping.

Clark however faces an additional perjury charge for his testimony to a parole board on his role in her death.

“I don’t see how the perjury charges could be tried with the other charges,” said Judge Butler.  “How could you ever do that?  If you want a hearing I’ll give you a hearing on it.”

“We anticipate filing multiple motions prior to the next pretrial so it’s probably best that we go on a special date,” said Clark’s attorney.

Hardin, Clark and all of the attorneys involved in this case declined comment. 

They’ll be back in court on December 9.


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