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Pretrial conference postponed in Ashland murder case

The next pretrial conference in the murder case against Robert Keegan is scheduled for April 12 in Jackson County Circuit Court.

Keegan pleaded not guilty to charges of murder in the second degree, manslaughter, unlawful possession of a firearm and reckless endangering after fatally shooting 19-year-old Aidan Ellison Nov. 23, 2020, in Ashland.

Defense counsel filed a motion to compel discovery for police body camera footage and 92 photographs referenced in a police report that were not part of the initial discovery file given by the state, defense attorney Alyssa Bartholomew said in court Tuesday.

Lawyers are also waiting for the results of a full autopsy report, toxicology and swabs of Ellison’s hands. Deputy District Attorney Benjamin Lull estimated results will come in the next week.

According to a probable cause affidavit, Keegan told investigators that Ellison punched him multiple times in the face and he shot in self defense. The initial autopsy and investigation revealed no evidence to support the claim.

Jackson County Circuit Court Judge Timothy Barnack said he does not want to see the case stalled further for discovery issues and urged counsel to work with their own investigators to fill in any evidentiary gaps in a timely manner.

A discovery hearing in chambers is scheduled for the week of April 5.

Keegan has been held in Jackson County Jail without bail since his arrest.

Robert Paul Keegan, 47, faces a charge of second-degree murder in the shooting death of Aidan Ellison in Ashland. Jackson County Jail booking photo.