Mullins Begins Federal Appeals Process
Tuesday, September 16, 2003
by Bobby Rader News Director
Another of the six Kentucky teens serving life without parole for the 1997 Lillelid murders in Greene County has begun federal court appeals in the case.
Edward Dean Mullins, after exhausting appeals at the state level, filed a writ of habeas corpus in U.S. District Court last week based on the Tennessee Supreme Court refusal to review lower state court rulings that upheld his convictions and sentences. His federal court petition challenges the constitutionality of issues raised in his previous appeals and asked that his guilty pleas be set aside and that he be granted a new trial.
Mullins first appeal was denied by the State Court of Appeals in February of 2000. His second state court appeal was denied by the state court in February.
Natasha Cornett has also exhausted her state court appeals and filed a similar federal court petition in May.
The Lillelids were returning to Knoxville from Johnson City when they were abducted at gunpoint from an I-81 rest stop in Greene County and gunned down a short time later on an isolated roadway near Baileyton.