It is being reported on August 20, 2015 that the judge has ruled on the pre-trial motions presented by murder suspect Jesse L. Matthew Jr’s defense. “Jesse L. Matthew Jr., 33, appeared in a Charlottesville courtroom Thursday afternoon for a series of motions in the capital murder case against him . . . Matthew was originally charged with first-degree murder, but prosecutors upgraded the charge to capital murder in May after consulting with Graham’s family and weighing the impact on the community.”
Today Albemarle County Circuit Court Judge Cheryl V. Higgins ruled mostly against the motions presented by the defense. The court will allow tokens or insignia of support for Hannah Graham during trial. Mr. Matthew will not be allowed to dress in personal attire. He must wear his prison garb and must be shackled when the jury is not present.
Matthew’s defense had also sought to prevent attorneys from discussing the case outside of the courtroom. The judge decided against the gag order. The case will be discussed with the media as it progresses. The trial is scheduled to begin in July 2016.