Judge denies request for new trial in Heidi Allen case

Mar 3, 2016

A judge has denied a request for a new trial in the 20-year-old Heidi Allen disappearance case.

The man who was convicted of kidnapping her from a New Haven convenience store, Gary Thibodeau, claims that new evidence has surfaced since the original trial that exonerates him. But, more than a year after the hearing for a new trial began, the judge denied the request.

His attorney, Lisa Peebles, said the ruling is disappointing but expected.

"We’ve seen the tenor of the court’s decision in connection with the other motions we filed in the case," Peebles said. "This isn’t rocket science. You could sit and listen to the hearing and you knew which way he was going to rule from the beginning. This was not a surprise. It’s just unfortunate that it took this long."

Peebles said they are relieved to have a decision now so they can appeal it. She said they will appeal on the claim that key evidence not allowed in this hearing could have changed the jury's verdict in the original trial. Thibodeau's attorneys have 30 days to submit their request for an appeal.

Oswego County District Attorney Gregory Oakes could not be reached for comment.

Allen was 18 when she kidnapped on Easter morning in 1994. Her body was never found.