Maine man loses appeal in child’s death in 1979

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — A Maine man serving 15 years for his infant son’s death 40 years ago has lost his appeal to the state supreme court.

Sixty-four-year-old Burton Hagar pleaded guilty last year to manslaughter after a judge ruled the infant’s death was a homicide, not sudden infant death syndrome. But his plea could’ve been withdrawn pending the outcome of his appeal.

The appeal was rejected Tuesday.

An attorney for Hagar contended his statements over the years about the death of 4-month-old Nathan Hagar were inconsistent and unreliable. The appeal also questioned the reliability of a police officer’s recollection about a pillow with mucus on it.

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