Local News

NC: Raleigh man shouldn't get new trial for ex's death

Posted November 10, 2014

Grant Hayes sits during his trial on Thursday, Aug. 29, 2013, for the July 2011 murder of his ex-girlfriend, Laura Ackerson.

— The state of North Carolina on Monday filed its response to a Raleigh man's claims that he did not receive a fair trial for the death of his ex-girlfriend more than three years ago.

Grant Ruffin Hayes, 35, was convicted Sept. 16, 2013, of first-degree murder in the July 13, 2011, death of Laura Jean Ackerson, whose dismembered remains were found in Texas several days after she was reported missing.

In August, Hayes filed an appeal on six points, including arguments that jurors never should have heard about a psychologist's report that concluded he wanted to "obliterate" Ackerson from his life and that song lyrics talking about an unidentified woman's death were inadmissible.

In its brief Monday, the state maintained there were no errors at Hayes' trial, saying Hayes ignored the context of the evidence in question. It was not to establish truth but to show motive and ill will toward Ackerson, the state contended.

Wake County prosecutors argued last year that Hayes lured Ackerson – the mother of two of his children – to his Raleigh apartment, killed her and then tried to cover up the crime by cutting up Ackerson and dumping her body in a creek across the street from the home of his wife's sister.

Hayes has denied killing Ackerson, saying that he helped cover up her death to protect his wife, Amanda Hayes, who he claims killed Ackerson during an argument.

At her trial earlier this year, however, Amanda Hayes told jurors that she only helped cover up the crime because Grant Hayes threatened her.

She was convicted of second-degree murder and is serving 13 to 16 years in prison.

The couple has since divorced.


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  • norainonmyparade Nov 11, 2014

    View quoted thread

    You lack reading comprehension.

    The truth will never be known because the only person with a vested interest in telling the truth is dead. The two murderers can hardly be counted on to tell "the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth". They will tell their version of the truth, which is whatever will get them the least punishment.

  • Lightfoot3 Nov 11, 2014

    He's right, in that the jurors should not have heard that stuff. DAs are ridiculous in what they will try to sway a jury. Just present the facts that prove he murdered the girl. Leave the theatrics for community theater.

    There was more than enough evidence that he did murder the lady, and he should have been executed by now. The system is broken.

  • ndadszucs Nov 11, 2014

    View quoted thread

    The truth is Ms. Ackerson was murdered, dismembered, and fed to alligators. Are you insinuating she somehow deserved this?

  • Kathy Sanders Nov 11, 2014
    user avatar

    He should have gotten the death penalty by dismemberment.

  • David McIntee Nov 11, 2014
    user avatar

    Maybe we should create a format for murder trials similar to a playoff format.

    Best 2 out of 3 for a conviction.

  • Bobby Caudle Nov 11, 2014
    user avatar

    what a joke, they both should be on death row

  • iron fist Nov 10, 2014

    I agree no retrial

  • dollibug Nov 10, 2014

    The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth will PROBABLY NEVER BE KNOWN.