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Bail Hearing for Kennedy Cousin

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VERNON, Conn. (AP) -- A Connecticut judge is hearing arguments on whether he has the authority to release Kennedy cousin Michael Skakel from prison while he awaits a new trial in the 1975 slaying of neighbor Martha Moxley.

   Judge Thomas Bishop has scheduled a hearing Wednesday morning in Rockville Superior Court.

   Bishop ordered a new trial for Skakel, saying his trial attorney failed to adequately represent him in 2002 when he was found guilty of bludgeoning Moxley with a golf club when they were 15-year-old neighbors in wealthy Greenwich.

   Prosecutors say Bishop doesn't have the authority to grant bond because of an automatic stay of his ruling while they appeal and it would be wrong to release him now.

   Skakel's attorney says Bishop has the authority and keeping Skakel in prison would be a miscarriage of justice.

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