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      Gun evidence thrown out in murder case

      State prosecutors seeking a Chillicothe man's third murder conviction in his neighbor's 1990 death will have to pursue the case without vital ballistics evidence.

      State prosecutors seeking a Chillicothe man's third murder conviction in his neighbor's 1990 death will have to pursue the case without vital ballistics evidence.A judge ruled Monday that a bullet recovered from shooting victim Lyndel Robertson was improperly handled by Robertson??s private investigator. That investigator wound up secretly leading the Livingston County Sheriff's Office inquiry that led to Mark Woodworth's conviction.The Missouri Attorney General's office will also be unable to discuss the gun allegedly used by Woodworth to shoot and kill Cathy Robertson as she slept. Woodworth was released from custody after the Missouri Supreme Court overturned his conviction in January over evidence it said he never received.He was first convicted in 1995, but won an appeal. A second jury found him guilty and sentenced Woodworth to life in prison.Related stories:New hearing for man convicted in '90 NW Mo. murder New evidence unfolds in existing murder case State defends handling of Woodworth evidence