It’s been almost six years since Patricia Prue took the state’s offer of life in prison for her role in the kidnapping and murder of St. Johnsbury Academy Teacher Melissa Jenkins.
“I stand here before you today willing to give my freedom for the loss of her life,” said Prue to the court and the Jenkins family during her sentencing on February 13, 2015. “I’ve asked for life without the possibility of parole…that’s how I want to show you that I’m deeply and profoundly sorry for whatever part I played in the death of your family member.”
But now Prue wants the conviction thrown out alleging misconduct by the prosecutor, the judge and her own defense attorney.
“Ineffective assistance of counsel, lack of objective communication,” reads hand-written Post Conviction Relief (PCR) petition filed by Prue in Caledonia Superior Court on November 12.
“Petitioner under extreme stress, couldn’t effectively aid in own defense, Detrimental Procedural Error, Excluded exculpatory/mitigating evidence,” reads the petition. “Biased Judge. Prosecutorial Misconduct - Prosecutor had personal relationship with alleged victim. Childhood Friends.”
A lot has changed since Prue was sentenced.
Her defense attorney, Brian Marsicovetere, still practices law in White River Junction. But the prosecutor, Caledonia County State’s Attorney Lisa Warren, is now a Vermont Superior Court Judge in Orleans County. And Judge Robert Bent, who sentenced Patricia Prue to life without parole for the kidnapping and murder of Jenkins, is now retired.
Patricia Prue, now 42, and her husband Allen Prue, 39, were Waterford residents.
The Prues kidnapped and murdered Jenkins, 33, after luring her and her two-year-old son out of their house on March 25, 2012 with a false claim of car trouble. The child was left behind in Jenkins’ car on Goss Hollow Road where he was later found by one of Jenkins’ friends.
Jenkins’ body was found by state police, weighted down with concrete blocks in the Connecticut River near a boat access in Barnet.
Allen Prue was convicted by a jury in October of 2014 for his role in the Jenkins murder and sentenced to life in prison.
Patricia Prue is serving her life sentence at Chittenden Regional Correctional Facility in South Burlington. Allen Prue is serving his sentence at an out-of-state facility.