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Retrial Hearing Set for Arizona Mom Freed from Death Row

Arizona Department of Corrections(PHOENIX) -- Attorneys are scheduled to return to court on Monday to discuss the retrial of an Arizona mother who was released from prison earlier this month after her conviction was thrown out in the 1989 murder of her 4-year-old son.

Prosecutors and Debra Jean Milke's defense team are expected to discuss how to proceed with a retrial against the 49-year-old woman, decades after she was convicted and condemned to death row.

Milke was released on Sept. 6 on a $250,000 bond as she awaits the next phase of her legal process.

Her retrial is tentatively scheduled for Sept. 30.

In December 1989, according to prosecutors, Milke told her 4-year-old son, Christopher, that she was going to take him to see Santa Claus.  Instead, they said, Milke handed her son over to two men who took him into the Arizona desert and killed him so she could collect an insurance payout.

Prosecutors said Milke confessed to Phoenix Police Det. Armando Saldate. However, he said he failed to tape record it.

Milke denied that she ever confessed, but was found guilty and sentenced to death.

In March, a federal appeals court overturned her conviction because the prosecution did not disclose Saldate's history of misconduct, which included eight cases in which judges tossed out confessions, indictments and convictions because he lied under oath or violated suspects' rights during interrogations.

Roger Scott and James Styers, the two men who prosecutors claimed actually killed Milke's son, were convicted and remain on death row.

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