- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 2, 2014

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - One of the men convicted in a notorious Newark schoolyard murder has lost his bid for a new trial.

Rodolfo Godinez (goh-DEEN’-ez) was one of six people who pleaded guilty or were convicted in the brutal killings of three college-bound friends and the serious wounding of another behind the Mount Vernon School in the summer of 2007.

Godinez was convicted and sentenced to three consecutive life terms in 2010. He made numerous claims in his appeal, including that his statement to police after the shootings shouldn’t have been introduced as evidence, and that the jury shouldn’t have been allowed to hear expert testimony on the MS-13 street gang.

Prosecutors said Godinez orchestrated the attack as part of a gang initiation.

Wednesday’s appeals court ruling rejected all of Godinez’s arguments.

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