Coday preps for trial

Attorney files motion to suppress evidence in local murder case

Posted: Friday, April 27, 2007

Jason Coday appeared shackled in Juneau Superior Court on Thursday as Judge Michael Thompson covered the final preparations for his murder trial and scheduled it to begin May 7.

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Coday, 29, is charged with shooting Simone Yung Kim, a 26-year-old Anchorage painting contractor, in the head and chest with a sawed-off .22-caliber rifle behind Juneau's Fred Meyer store.

Police said there was no known connection between Coday and Kim. Officers said Coday arrived in Juneau two days before the shooting and lived in the woods near the murder scene.

Juneau Police Chief Greg Browning called the shooting a random act of violence.

Kim's murder was Juneau's first in six years.

Coday's trial begins with an evidentiary hearing on May 7. If the prosecution and defense agree on allowable evidence, Thompson said he expects to seat a jury and begin testimony the following day.

Defense Attorney David Seid on Tuesday filed a late motion to suppress evidence. Seid asked the judge to block the use of any lineup photographs and their results, as well as evidence gained through interrogation.

Seid cited Coday's Fourth Amendment right to due process and protection from unreasonable search and seizure.

District Attorney Doug Gardner said he expects to file an opposition motion early next week. Gardner declined to discuss the trial beyond saying it was very important.

Court records show that Coday's alleged attack on Kim was not his first use of a sawed-off weapon. Less than two months earlier, police in Sandy Valley, Nev., arrested Coday after witnesses described Coday carrying a sawed-off shotgun, wearing an ammunition belt and knives.

Coday allegedly raged at a man and his children as they played in a backyard pool. Witnesses told police that they heard several shotgun blasts following the argument. Coday told police he fired the shotgun into the ground.

• Greg Skinner can be reached at greg.skinner@juneauempire.com.



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