Decades after killings, Jeffrey MacDonald back in court

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Jeffrey MacDonald (WTVD)

A former Fort Bragg doctor convicted of killing his pregnant wife and their two daughters nearly five decades ago is getting another chance to argue that he's innocent.

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A three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit of Appeals will hear arguments Thursday in the case of Jeffrey MacDonald, who inspired the book and television miniseries "Fatal Vision." The 73-year-old has long maintained that the killings were committed by drug-crazed hippies who broke into his North Carolina apartment.

Jeffrey MacDonald

MacDonald's attorneys are challenging a 2014 district court judge's decision denying his bid to have his convictions thrown out. They say evidence uncovered since his 1979 trial proves he's innocent.

MacDonald, who was convicted in the murders of his pregnant wife and two daughters in 1970, has tried numerous times to get a new trial, each time being denied.

Prosecutors are urging the court to reject MacDonald's appeal, saying in court filings that they're confident he was the killer.

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