Once convicted of killing his wife in 1990, comics retailer and convention organizer Michael George is getting a second trial, after a judge overturned the jury’s June conviction on the basis of prosecutorial misconduct, among other reasons.
The first trial delivered mostly circumstantial evidence against George regarding the killing — his wife Barbara was shot execution-style in the backroom of the comic shop the Georges owned together.
The crux of the judge’s new opinion seems to be a recently found file about a criminal who was in the area at the time of Barbara George’s murder, the Detroit Free Press reports.
Documents recently discovered in a police file at the time of the murder refer to a man with a criminal past who knew the Georges and was in the area at the time of the murder. In June — a month before the documents were found — Michael George was sentenced to life in prison on first-degree murder in her slaying.
George’s attorney, former Macomb County Prosecutor Carl Marlinga, said the folder, which was found between two other folders in July and then given to prosecutors and defense attorneys, contains seven documents including a 1990 report by a Clinton Township officer about a call from Pat Flannery at Wayne County trustee services about pertinent information on the George case.
In the report, Flannery said he lived with Rita Prog, who was once married to Marshall David Prog, a drug addict who boasted that he had been involved in criminal activity in the past and had gotten away with a murder. A few days before Barbara George was killed, Marshall David Prog had returned to Michigan from Florida, was broke, and asked his ex-wife for money, which she declined to give. But a few days after the murder he returned to Florida with a large sum of money.
The case has already been the subject of a two-hour documentary on MSNBC and looks to have many more twists and turns yet to come.