Lawyer Speaks Out

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The state appointed Jay Greeno to defend Reginald Carr, who was convicted of killing five people in December 2000.

Jay Greeno says serving as Reginald Carr's lawyer put his life on hold and sometimes turned it upside down.

He says at times the stress was so high he felt physically ill. He received hate emails, and negative comments from community members.

Greeno says police officers and prosecutors realize he's just doing his job. But, others don't understand what it means to be appointed by the state.

The state can only chose from a few lawyers to represent clients in death penalty cases. These lawyers have special training.

Greeno says, "well that's what makes the system work without me doing that the system is corrupt and we all lose."

KAKE News asked Greeno if he thought Reginald Carr was guilty when he saw all the evidence for the first time.

He responded, "my job is not to judge Reginald Carr on what he did or didn't do, my job is to find out what evidence the state has against him, and figure out the best way to defend him. Some people think that's wrong but, that's the way the system works"

Greeno says, he thinks about the victims a lot and knows they are going to be missed. He adds, "you wonder how we can get to that point, how we can do that to one another."

Greeno wasn't surprised by the guilty verdict. But, he doesn't support the death penalty under any circumstances.

Greeno spent 2000 hours over the last two years on this case.

The state paid him half as much as his regular salary.

Even though the trial ended four days ago, he still feels numb and exhausted. But, he says he would go through it all again because that's his job.

Greeno says he won't represent Reginald Carr in the appeals process. He is now spending time trying to put his practice back together. Since mid-summer he has not been able to take any new business because of all the time spent representing a man who now calls death row home.

Greeno has defended several clients in high profile capital murder cases in his 19 year career.

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