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Judge to hear motions in December in Kevin Thornton murder case

Posted: October 19, 2011 - 7:41pm

A judge will hear motions filed in the Kevin Thornton murder case on Dec. 12, online court dockets show.

The report shows 7th Circuit Division 2 judge will hear the motions in Hot Spring County, Ark., Court. The motion hearing was scheduled Tuesday.

Three teenagers stand accused of murdering Juneau resident Thornton, then 19, while he was visiting friends and family in Arkansas in July.

Earlier this month, the three defendants’ lawyers requested for the boys to be tried separately instead of together in one court case. The attorney for the youngest of the three also applied for a mental evaluation.

Last month, their lawyers filed motions requesting the case be dismissed or transferred to a juvenile division of circuit court, and to suppress statements the teens gave to investigators after the alleged incident, including statements that allege they were “laughing when [they] learned of (victim’s) death,” according to the court docket report.

Arkansas Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Richard Garrett filed motions just last week protesting those motions, arguing a transfer to juvenile court is not warranted in this case for defendants Richard Wybark, 17, Timothy Norwood, 16, and Clinton Ross, 16.

Wybark, Norwood and Ross are facing charges of engaging in violent criminal group activity along with the murder counts for their involvement in Thornton’s death.

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