Pubdate: Wed, 05 Feb 2003
Source: State, The (SC)
Copyright: 2003 The State
Contact:  http://www.thestate.com/
Details: http://www.mapinc.org/media/426

ADDING DRUG CHARGE TO FETUS CASE WEIGHED

The S.C. Supreme Court on Tuesday considered whether an Horry County
woman convicted of killing her fetus by using cocaine should face an
additional drug charge.

The trial judge threw out a cocaine distribution charge against Regina
McKnight, though a jury in 2001 convicted her of homicide by child
abuse. A sharply divided S.C. Supreme Court last week upheld her
homicide conviction.

The court on Tuesday heard arguments about whether the cocaine
distribution charge should be reinstated.

Chief Justice Jean Toal and Associate Justice Costa Pleicones
questioned Charles Richardson of the S.C. attorney general's office
about whether they could overturn the trial judge's ruling without
violating McKnight's constitutional right to be tried only once.

The five justices will issue their ruling later. McKnight is serving a
12-year sentence on the homicide charge.
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