SJC overturns manslaughter conviction in 2008 slaying

The state’s highest court has overturned the involuntary manslaughter conviction of a Boston man who allegedly killed his roommate in 2008 in a quarrel over missing drugs.

The Supreme Judicial Court ordered a new trial in the case of Anthony Chambers, who was convicted in the Feb. 10, 2008 death of Edward Quiles.

The court, in a unanimous ruling written by Justice Ralph D. Gants, said a Superior Court judge had erred by not allowing the defense to introduce evidence supporting its self-defense claim.


The judge decided not to introduce evidence that Quiles had previously participated in a violent assault on somebody else because there was no dispute that Quiles was the aggressor in the fight, the court.

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But the high court said in its unanimous ruling that there was a dispute over who escalated the fight by grabbing a knife and turning the conflict deadly – so the judge should have allowed the evidence in.

Chambers and Quiles allegedly fought after a golf ball-sized amount of heroin of Quiles’s went missing.