DETROIT (WWJ) – A man sentenced to life in prison in the February 2012 deaths of two Detroit-area women who were abducted, killed and buried in a park has been granted a new trial on a technicality.
The Michigan Court of Appeals said in opinion released Tuesday that the jury for 29-year-old Brandon Cain wasn’t properly sworn in. Lawyers say a clerk read an oath for prospective jurors instead of one for jurors.
“Because of that, the Court of Appeals says that Mr. Cain now has to have a new trial. He’ll stay in prison, but he gets a new trial,” said WWJ Legal Analyst Charlie Langton. “The prosecutor has said they will appeal the decision to the Supreme Court.”
Cain was convicted of first-degree murder, torture, unlawful imprisonment and felony firearm charges in the murder of 18-year-old Abreeya Brown and 22-year-old Ashley Conaway. The best friends were abducted from their home in a hail of gunfire and stuffed into a car trunk before they were killed in Feb. 2012.
The young women’s bodies were found about a month later in shallow graves in a wooded area near Six Mile and Telegraph roads in Detroit. The women were bound, gagged and shot execution-style. Police believe they were targeted for informing authorities about an earlier shooting.
Cain was considered the “mastermind” in the plot. Four other men were sentenced in the case.
Cousins 26-year-old Reginald Brown and 21-year-old Jeremy Brown received life sentences; 27-year-old Brian Lee was given 45-80 years; and 24-year-old Miguel Rodriguez got 20-35 years.
The Brown cousins are not related to Abreeya Brown.