FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – After the first trial ended with a hung jury, Allen County prosecutors said in court Thursday they will retry Richard Niemeyer for the 1993 killing of Kevin Weisenburger.
Nearly three full rows of the courtroom gallery were full of around 20 of Niemeyer’s family and friends at the hearing Thursday morning. Several cried out when prosecutors said they will pursue a second trial. The family told 24-Hour News 8’s sister station, WANE, after the hearing the prosecution is wasting taxpayer money because Niemeyer is innocent. They said even Weisenburger’s family doesn’t want a second trial.
Weisenburger’s body was found in his room at Carriage House apartments on May 9, 1993. He had been beaten to death. Police closed their investigation into his death a year later, but last year, reopened it when DNA collected from the scene matched Niemeyer’s DNA collected while he was in the Indiana Department of corrections.
In March 2015, police brought in Niemeyer for questioning and a DNA swab was taken, according to court documents. His DNA was matched to DNA on both a cigarette butt and a blood-stained towel collected at the scene, according to the affidavit.
Niemeyer told police he did not know Weisenburger and had never been in his apartment, but admitted that he was doing “a lot of stupid stuff” in the early 1990s, including drinking and smoking marijuana, the affidavit said. He then told investigators that, “if I was there, I didn’t do it,” the affidavit said.
The jury trial, which started August 18, 2016, ended in a mistrial when the jury reported they were deadlocked.
Attorneys will be back in court on August 11 to set the date for the new trial.