Primghar, Iowa — The owner of the former Buddz’s and Rec Bowl building in Sheldon, who was convicted in May of arson and insurance fraud — has requested a new trial.
Kristina Manasil was convicted in a jury trial that concluded on May 6th, 2015. Her attorney, John Keith Rigg, filed a motion for a new trial and arrest of judgement this week.
Among other arguments, the defense argues that the jury should not have been instructed that they may find alternate factual theories of guilt. The defense says that the instruction allowed for a non-unanimous jury verdict in violation of both the Federal and Iowa Constitutions.
Assistant Iowa Attorney General Coleman McAllister says that in essence, in her motion for new trial, Manasil claims that the Court should order a new trial on two grounds: First, the defense attacks several of the Court’s rulings that were made during trial and secondly, they claim that factually the jury’s verdict was contrary to the weight of the evidence.
McAllister says that the Court will likely hear the motion for new trial immediately prior to the sentencing hearing, which has been rescheduled to July 6th at 11 AM.