November 2008 – Heemstra Trial

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Wrongful Death Blog. November 6, 2008

November 6 2008 - Heemstra Trial

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A second wrongful death lawsuit against a central Iowa farmer who killed his neighbor and hid the body in a cistern was expected to begin in Polk County.

The lawsuit was filed in Warren County against Rodney Heemstra, of Milo, by the family of Tom Lyon, who was killed in 2003.

Heemstra was released from prison last week after serving more than four years. He was originally convicted of first-degree murder. The Iowa Supreme Court ordered a new trial, and Heemstra was convicted of voluntary manslaughter.

The conviction prompted the Supreme Court to review a $11.5 million judgment in a lawsuit based largely on the murder conviction. The high court declared the judgment invalid.