Virginia Supreme Court to hear Stephen Rankin case

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PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY/AP) — The Virginia Supreme Court will hear the case of former Portsmouth police officer Stephen Rankin.

Rankin was convicted in August 2016 of voluntary manslaughter in the shooting death of William Chapman, and was later sentenced to two and a half years in prison. His defense has filed multiple appeals since that time, seeking a new trial and working to overturn the conviction. 

The Court of Appeals affirmed Rankin’s conviction in April.

But Rankin says the jury was unfairly made aware of a previous fatal shooting as officer, a case that did not result in charges. This refers to a 2011 incident in which Rankin shot and killed Kirill Denyakin, of Kazakhstan.

On Tuesday, the state’s top court agreed to hear his appeal of his conviction for shooting Chapman. The Virginia Supreme Court could determine whether Rankin gets a new trial.

Stay with WAVY.com for the latest developments.

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