UPDATE: Convicted murderer Skyy Mims seeks new trial - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATE: Convicted murderer Skyy Mims seeks new trial

Posted: Updated:
DALTON, GA (WRCB) -

UPDATE: Convicted murderer Skyy Mims is asking for a new trial. Mims was convicted in June of 2015 for the murder of D.K. Chaudhari.

She was sentenced to life without parole.

A hearing on the new trial was postponed Friday because the trial transcripts have not been completed.

READ MORE | Convicted murderer Skyy Mims sentenced to life without parole

A new date for the hearing has been set for December 8, 2015.


PREVIOUS STORY: Twenty-two-year-old Skyy Mims remained emotionless as she was sentenced to life without parole on Friday.

"Ms. Mims' mental health issues have not allowed her to understand. She doesn't understand what has happened or what's going on," said Carla Marable, Mims' attorney.

Last March, surveillance cameras caught Mims at the Airport Rd. Kanku's Express gas station stabbing the store clerk, D.K. Chaudhari, to death. She was convicted on 11 counts last month.

Marable tried pushing for life with parole, citing Mims' young age, clean criminal history, and mental health issues.

District Attorney Bert Poston said prosecutors took the death penalty off the table for those same reasons, and noted Mims' lack of remorse for the crime.

If parole was an option, Mims would have been eligible for release after 30 years. Judge Jack Partain said no. 

"In 30 years, I think that it would be safe for society. She would have had mental health care. She would be 50 years old," Marable explained.

Mims' father, Mario, took the stand on Friday, describing his family's history of mental health issues, including bipolar disorder and paranoid schizophrenia.

"America needs to pay attention to their children, just as I was doing before this happened," he said.

Several months before the murder, he took his daughter to a hospital near their home in Michigan after Mims started showing signs of mental problems.

Mims checked herself out of that facility against doctors' advice, and took off to Georgia to get her rap music career off the ground.

Within a couple of months, she was in jail for murder.

"I believe God is just. The judge is second," said Mario Mims. "We are in the law of the land, and those are the rules we've

got to play by."

"All over the United States, people have a variety of mental health issues and people are ignoring them. We have to wake up and get people who need it the help," Marable said.

Mims plans on filing an appeal, but Marable will not be representing her.


PREVIOUS STORY: FRIDAY: It took the jury less than an hour to convict Skyy Mims on the 11 charges against her. 

Police say Mims fatally stabbed 37-year-old D.K. Chaudhari at the Kanku Express in March of 2014. Prosecutors say Mims, an aspiring model from Detroit, was obsessed with winning the lottery.  Police say she stole more than 50 tickets and cash after the murder. 

A DNA expert testified Thursday that Mims' DNA was found on latex gloves and red duct tape found at the scene.  Mims' defense attorney say police had the wrong woman. But the evidence against her was too strong.

Bert Poston, Prosecutor, "We are pleased obviously. We're happy for the community and happ for the family. The evidence in the case was overwhelming so the verdict is not unexpected. We're just glad to get the case tried and get closure for friends and family that lost a good man."

Mims wanted to testify in court Friday, but her attorney advised against it.  She will be sentenced on June 19th.

The fifth day of Skyy Mim's murder trial began with the presentation of additional evidence by detectives on the case. Bloody gloves, sales receipts and lottery tickets were all presented.

The defense argues there's not enough evidence to convict Mims of the murder, but the state says there's a laundry list.

Mims' DNA was on several items connected to the crime scene including latex gloves and duct tape with the clerk's blood on it.

She also had the bloody knife that was used to stab the clerk. Yet the defense says it was somebody else.

Surveillance cameras captured the killer stabbing the clerk, D.K. Chaudhari, in a back room.

A cell phone dropped next to his body had several pictures and videos on it including selfies of Mims.

But the defense tried pinning the murder on another Atlanta-based rapper named Keisha Jones.

The public defender's office got a tip early on. That the two looked alike.

However, Jones was never a suspect. The GBI says there wasn't any evidence against her.

Skyy Mims wanted to testify but her attorney advised against it. 


THURSDAY: Physical evidence was the opening topic as Thursday's testimony got underway. 

The fish filet knife, believed to be the weapon used, was wrapped in the same red tape that was found at the scene and in Mims' bag.

Skyy Mims was randomly breaking out into laughter during day four of her murder trial on Thursday.

The 22-year-old shook her head while a DNA expert from the GBI was on the witness stand.

Terri George tested several items in the case, and found Mims' DNA all over the inside of latex gloves with the gas station clerk's blood on them.

"She matched at all 15 locations for both gloves," George said. "The frequency for that is 1 in 5 quintillion in the African American population."

The killer was caught on surveillance camera walking into the Kanku's gas station on Airport Rd. in Dalton wearing a hoodie and latex gloves.

D.K. Chaudhari was attacked in a back room of the gas station. He was stabbed twice before being suffocated with red duct tape.

"He didn't just bleed to death spontaneously, something had to cause it. In this case the cause of death would be a stab wound to the back," testified medical examiner Dr. Christopher Gulledge.

Gulledge said Chaudhari would have been alive for less than 10 minutes before bleeding out, but stayed awake long enough to suffer through the attack.

Police found a bloody knife, latex gloves and a roll of red duct tape inside Mims' purse when she was arrested. Chaudhari's DNA was on the knife, gloves and duct tape.

Mims' DNA was on everything but the knife. One glove had a mix of three people's DNA on it, including Mims'.

Defense attorney Carla Marable pointed out that those two other people were never identified.

"The one we were able to identify was the profile of Skyy Mims," George said.


WEDNESDAY:  The morning's testimony began with  Kyle Alexander-Music Harewood, a friend of Mims' who took the stand.Skyy Mims was dressed in an all-black hoodie Wednesday. And even gave a nod and a salute to the camera on the third day of her murder trial.

The jury watched dash cam video of her arrest, which was at a house in Cartersville two days after the murder happened.

She was completely nude when she was taken into custody and had to be wrapped in a white sheet and was heard telling officers "Y'all caught me red handed."

Mims was an aspiring model and rapper and she was in the Atlanta area, staying with a guy named Kyle Harewood.

Harwood says he's a hip-hop music producer who likes to party with bisexual women.

One of his friends is another rapper, named Keisha Jones who the defense claims is the real killer.

Mistaken identity is part of Mims' defense strategy and the two look strikingly similar.  


TUESDAY: Testimony continued Tuesday in the Skyy Mims murder trial.

Prosecutors say Mims -- an aspiring model from Detroit -- was obsessed with winning the lottery and stole 80 tickets and cash after the murder.

But Mims' defense says they've got the wrong woman.

Security camera video shown in court Tuesday shows the victim trying to shut the door, but it gets pushed open during the murder.

But the killer didn't stop after the murder.

Once Chaudhari was no longer responsive, she moved behind the counter, digging a few hundred dollars out of the cash register.

Mims, who was an aspiring rapper and model from Detroit, was in the Atlanta area trying to get her rap career started.

Witnesses say she was obsessed with winning the 1-dollar lottery ticket for a chance to win 500 dollars a week for life.

The killer was caught on camera taking an entire roll of those same scratch-offs.

The suspect initially walked into the gas station, bare chested, wearing an open black hooded jacket.

She waited for the store to clear out before changing into different clothes to carry out the murder.

But according to Mims' attorney, the 22-year-old has a small tattoo on her chest -- and says the woman caught on camera -- couldn't be Mims.

Investigators say these cameras wouldn't have picked up such a small detail in the first place.

In court Tuesday, Mims turned around and blew kisses to her family.


MONDAY: Accused murderer Skyy Mims remained calm and quiet during the first day of her trial Monday, even when the state talked about their overwhelming DNA evidence against her.

The 22-year-old is required to wear a shock belt under her clothes for added safety precautions in the courtroom. She was wearing a paisley top, khaki pants and had a partially shaved head on Monday.

Mims has always maintained her innocence and says she was blamed.

"Keshia Jones knew enough to get away. My client was too high and out of it to get away," said Skyy Mims' attorney, Carla Marable, who argues Mims was blamed for the murder by shady friends who promised they could advance her music career.

The 22-year-old is accused of stabbing clerk Daiyubhai Chaudhari to death inside the Kanku's gas station on Airport Rd. in Dalton in March of last year.

Mims was an aspiring rapper and model from Detroit. She was in Georgia trying to get her rapping career off the ground. According to Marable, friends in Cartersville said they had connections in the Atlanta rap music industry.

The state said Mims was obsessed with winning the lottery so she could win success in her career. Lotto tickets that were stolen from the Kanku's were later found at the Cartersville home where Mims was arrested.

"I noticed the clerk was laying on the floor in a puddle of blood," testified Whitfield Co. Deputy Chris Callahan, who was the first officer on the scene.

Chaudhari was attacked in a back room of the gas station. A person in a white hoodie was caught on surveillance cameras stabbing him.

He was also suffocated. The killer taped his eyes, nose and mouth with red duct tape. The state says those items connect Mims to the murder with her own DNA.

"Inside the black carry bag is the red handled knife and the red roll of duct tape," DA Bert Poston explained to the jury.

Chaudhari's blood was found on the knife inside Mims' bag. His blood plus Mims' DNA were also detected on gloves and duct tape.

"The prosecution is gonna jump up and down about DNA," Marable said. "You're going to find this house (where Mins was arrested) had a lot of communal living."

The trial is expected to last throughout the week. Testimony resumes Tuesday morning.


PREVIOUS STORY: The woman at the center of a high profile murder case in Whitfield County is headed to trial.  

21-year-old Skyy Mims is facing several counts including murder and armed robbery.

Police say Mims, a Detroit native walked into the Kanku's Express off Airport Road in March last year, and stabbed the store clerk to death.  

She's pleaded not guilty to the charges.  

A final motions hearing was held Friday ahead of Monday's trial.  

Skyy Mims was quiet, staring at ceiling for parts of interview. Laughed, asked GBI agent if he was psychic.

Mims was an aspiring model and rapper from Detroit. Her attorney is Carla Marable, also from Detroit. She's asking GBI agent about lotto tickets.

Lotto tickets were found at Skyy Mims friend's house, where she was arrested in Bartow County. Marable argues Mims didn't understand her rights.

Judge rules Skyy Mims was read her rights and therefore would have understood them.

Lotto tickets were found at the house Skyy Mims was staying at. Lotto tickets matched stolen tickets from gas station where the clerk was killed.

Skyy Mims has never requested a plea deal, and one has never been offered. Mims has maintained her innocence, per the district attorney.

Whitfield Co Sheriff's Office is requesting extra security in the courtroom during the trial. Also wants Skyy Mims to wear a shock belt during trial.

Jury selection begins 9 a.m. on Monday and trial opening statements will start immediately after jury seated. 

Powered by Frankly