Hachmeister argues for new trial, says prosecutor made "misstatements"

Jason W. Hachmeister (Kansas Dept. of Corrections)
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) -- "Misstatements of the evidence" by the assistant district attorney prosecuting Jason W. Hachmeister in the strangulation death of his mother in 2011 are grounds for Hachmeister to receive a new trial, the defendant's appellate attorney told the Kansas Supreme Court this week.

In July 2015, Hachmeister was sentenced to serve a hard 50-year term in prison after a jury convicted him of first-degree murder in his mother's 2011 slaying in her southwest Topeka home where the mother and son lived.

The appellate defense attorney, Joseph Desch, said Hachmeister didn't receive a fair trial based on what he said were the misstatements of Todd Hiatt, the prosecutor in the murder trial.

At times, Hiatt acted as an expert witness during the trial, Desch said.
Four years after Hachmeister was convicted and eight years after Sheila Hachmeister was killed, the Supreme Court heard the son's appeal on Monday in the killing of his mother.

A Shawnee County District Court jury convicted Hachmeister on Feb. 3, 2015, of premeditated first-degree murder in his mother’s slaying.

She was killed in her home at 3520 S.W. Belle on Sept. 10, 2011.

District Court Judge Richard Anderson sentenced Hachmeister, who asked for mercy, to the Hard 50.

The “Hard 50” sentence will be served concurrently with Hachmeister’s earlier prison sentence for his child pornography convictions, the judge said.

In December 2013, a Shawnee County jury convicted Hachmeister of 105 counts of sexual exploitation of children.

In February 2014, Hachmeister was sentenced to seven years and two months in the exploitation case. It was the maximum sentence for the convictions.

The judge said what he found lacking in the murder trial is a reason for the killing of Sheila Hachmeister, who was repeatedly stabbed, then strangled to death in her home.

There is no basis for mercy in the case, Anderson said. The judge had the choice to either sentence Hachmeister to prison with parole eligibility after 25 years or the Hard 50 meaning Hachmeister must serve 50 years before he would be eligible for parole.

Anderson called the attack on the victim “merciless,” “brutal,” “extremely wicked” and “atrocious.”

Sheila Hachmeister, who was stabbed on the head and clubbed, then strangled, suffered pain and the trauma of knowing that a son, Jason Hachmeister, was committing the attack, the judge said.

When Jason Hachmeister was sentenced, he was dry-eyed as he heard details of the attack on his mother. Nearby, the convicted man's brother, Aaron Hachmeister, was in tears.