Joshua Keadle, convicted of second-degree murder, asks for new trial

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BEATRICE, Neb. -- Joshua Keadle, convicted Feb. 12 of second-degree murder for the killing of Peru State student Tyler Thomas in 2010, has applied for a new trial with claims there was misconduct and other issues.

Keadle was originally charged with first-degree murder, but the jury found him guilty on a lesser offense.

In the motion filed by Keadle Thursday, he listed six reasons why he believes his trial was unfair, including irregularity in the proceedings of the court or the prosecuting attorney, misconduct of the jury or the prosecuting attorney, the verdict of guilty was not sustained by sufficient evidence and newly discovered evidence for Keadle "which he could not with reasonable diligence have discovered and produced at trial."

Prosecutors stated that Thomas was killed at a Missouri River boat ramp area east of Peru and dumped in the river. The defense contended the theory lacked proof and Keadle denied a role in her death.

Thomas disappeared Dec. 3, 2010, after leaving a party near the southeast Nebraska campus. Although her body was never found, the state issued a death certificate for Thomas in 2013.

Prosecutors charged Keadle in 2017. His sentencing date is scheduled for April 29 if he is not granted a new trial. He faces a sentence of 20 years to life in prison.

Keadle was also convicted in 2012 for sexually assaulting a 15-year-old girl while he was attending Midland Lutheran College on a football scholarship