Retrial planned in Buddhist temple murders

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PHOENIX, Ariz--The Maricopa County Attorney's office says it will seek a retrial against the man convicted of killing nine people at a Buddhist temple in 1991.

The decision comes after the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday refused to overturn a decision that threw out Johnathan Doody's confession.

Doody was just 17 when he confessed to the slayings of six priests, a nun and two helpers during a robbery at the Wat Promkunaram temple west of Phoenix.

In 1994 he was sentenced to 281 years in prison.

Since then his attorneys have argued his confession was coerced and that his Miranda warnings were inadequate.

Last year the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in his favor and threw out the conviction.

On Tuesday the Supreme Court refused the Arizona Attorney General's request to hear an appeal.

"It was a disappointment," said Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne. "We'd  hoped the U.S. Supreme Court would reverse it, but he'll still be retried."
 

At the Wat Promkunarum temple in Wadell, a memorial stands as a daily reminder of the heinous crime.

Monk Bill Callaway says he and other residents of the temple are frustrated with the legal system's handling of the case.

"As monks, of course we wish everybody well, but we know this guy committed these crimes, at least we're convinced in our minds through all the evidence that he committed these crimes and he needs to pay the price for it," Callaway said.

Charges could be refiled against Doody in the coming days.

Horne said he would remain in custody until the next trial.

Doody's attorney did not immediately return calls for comment.

Another man who confessed to involvement in the murders, Alessandro Garcia, is serving a life sentence.

The Associated Press contributed to this report