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Appeals Court to Review Case in 'Factual Innocence' Finding

February 17, 2001

SYLMAR — A state appellate court has set a date to hear prosecutors' arguments that a woman acquitted in her husband's beating death should not have been found "factually innocent," officials said Friday.

The 2nd District Court of Appeal will take oral arguments on Feb. 26 in the case of Jeanie Louise Adair, 40, who had been accused of killing her husband in their Sylmar home in 1996.

Prosecutors contend San Fernando Superior Court Judge L. Jeffrey Wiatt erred when he ruled in 1999 that she was factually innocent, said Sandi Gibbons, a spokeswoman for the Los Angeles County district attorney's office.

The rare ruling by the judge effectively erased the arrest of Adair, who was acquitted by a jury. The appeal will have no effect on the criminal case because a defendant cannot be tried twice for the same crime.

Robert Adair, 40, was beaten to death with a baseball bat in his living room on Nov. 5, 1996. His wife told police the couple were the victims of a home-invasion robbery.

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