SNOW HILL, Md. (AP) — A Maryland appeals court has overturned the murder conviction of an Eastern Shore man because of flawed jury instructions.

James Edward Ballard, of Pocomoke City, was convicted of second-degree-murder in the September 2010 fatal stabbing of Russell Matthew Bailey III, 18.

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Ballard argued that he had been acting in self-defense when he stabbed Bailey.

His lawyer urged the judge to give jurors a specific self-defense instruction, but the request was denied and Ballard was convicted.

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The Daily Times of Salisbury reports that the Maryland Court of Special Appeals sided with Ballard’s public defender and reversed his conviction, sending the case back for a new trial.

Worcester County prosecutors plan to retry the case.

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