Mistrial declared for man sentenced in Aurora hammer attack murders

Local News

ARAPAHOE COUNTY, Colo. (KDVR) – A mistrial has been declared in the second murder trial of Alex Ewing.

A judge granted Ewing’s defense a motion for a competency evaluation and declared a mistrial on Wednesday morning.

Ewing was on trial for the murder of 50-year-old Patricia Smith. She was attacked and beaten to death inside of her Lakewood home in 1984.

Earlier this month, an Arapahoe County judge sentenced Alex Ewing to three consecutive life sentences for the murder of the Bennett family with a hammer inside their Aurora home in 1984.

The court convicted Ewing of three counts of first-degree murder, three counts of felony murder, first-degree burglary, first-degree theft, theft, and sexual assault.

Seven-year-old Melissa Bennett was violently raped and killed. Her parents, Bruce and Deborah Bennett, were also killed. The 3-year-old sister, Vanessa, was the only survivor.

The so-called ‘hammer killings’ terrorized the entire Denver area at the time. Five people were killed in a 12 day period.

After almost four decades, investigators were able to pin Ewing to the Bennett murders using DNA found at the scene. 

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