MANCHESTER, N.H. — A judge has denied a request to release the handgun used to kill the husband of Pamela Smart in 1990, a key piece of evidence in a lurid case that inspired sensational media coverage.

Authorities say the .38-caliber revolver was used by then-16-year-old William Flynn to kill Gregory Smart. Flynn was accompanied by three friends, including Vance Lattime Jr., who drove the getaway car.

Lattime’s father owned the gun and filed a motion to have it returned.

Prosecutors disagreed, saying Smart, continues to file appeals. WMUR-TV reports a judge agreed.

Flynn testified that Smart seduced him, and then threatened to break up if he didn’t kill her husband. All four have been paroled.

Smart denies knowing about the plot. She’s serving a life sentence without parole.