LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Another twist in the case of one of the most notorious drug dealers in Kentuckiana came Monday.
Federal prosecutors filed a motion to dismiss their case against Ricky Kelly, a convicted drug dealer accused in eight murders, and instead send his case back to state court.
Kelly was supposed to go on trial in Federal court in September for the 2005 murder of LaJuante "B.B." Jackson, who was killed in the Sheppard Square housing complex. But now, that won't happen.
In a move Kelly's attorney called a big surprise federal prosecutors decided to dismiss the case and send it back to state court.
Ironically, a few years ago, Former Commonwealth's Attorney Dave Stengel said, "We preserve our right to go back on all of these if something happens in federal case."
And that's exactly what happened. But why?
In a motion to dismiss the federal indictment it states a likely witness to the crime, Greg Sawyers, was murdered in 2013, apparently weakening the federal case.
Sawyers had told investigators he saw Kelly shoot Jackson.
His attorney in the federal case, Steve Romines, said federal prosecutors had offered to settle the case, but they declined and said they were ready for trial. Something he said rarely happens.
Romines said as a general rule federal prosecutors don't dismiss cases when they don't settle.
This new state murder charge against Kelly carries a penalty of 20 years to life in prison or death.