Delay Sought for Suspect in Stepdaughter's Death

8 years 3 months 4 days ago Friday, May 20 2011 May 20, 2011 Friday, May 20, 2011 6:45:20 AM CDT May 20, 2011 in News
By: Associated Press

ROLLA (AP) - A southwest Missouri man accused of killing his 9-year-old stepdaughter is seeking a delay and a change of venue for his trial.

The Joplin Globe reports Friday that attorneys for 28-year-old David W. Spears contend pretrial publicity requires that jurors for Spears' trial be chosen from farther away than Pulaski County.

They cite a mistrial declared in April for Spears' co-defendant, 35-year-old Chris Collings. The mistrial occurred after not enough potential jurors could be found -- even though the proceeding was in Phelps County on a change of venue from Barry County.

The two men are accused of raping and murdering 9-year-old Rowan Ford in November 2007. They both face the death penalty. Their cases were moved to Pulaski and Phelps counties on an earlier change of venue.

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