The highest court in Massachusetts has thrown out the first-degree murder conviction of a man who shot a co-worker at a Cambridge pool supply company.
Clyde Howard, a custodian at Bay State Pool Supplies, was convicted of shooting machine operator Maurice Ricketts in 2009.
Prosecutors said the men had an ongoing dispute.
The Supreme Judicial Court on Thursday overturned Howard's conviction, finding that some statements he made to police should not have been admissible because he had invoked his right to remain silent at one point during the interrogation.
The court gave prosecutors the option of re-trying Howard on the first-degree charge or reducing his conviction to second-degree murder, which would make him eligible for parole after 15 years. He is currently serving life without the possibility of parole.