Suspect in Arnold Abduction and Murder is Assigned a New Defense Team
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — A new team of defense attorneys has been appointed to represent one of two suspects charged in the murder of a Montana high school teacher.
State District Judge Richard Simonton appointed Alfred Avignone, Lisa Banick and Eric Brewer as the public defenders for 23-year-old Michael Keith Spell of Parachute, Colo.
No explanation was given for the replacement of the two attorneys who previously represented Spell.
Spell and 58-year-old Lester Van Waters, Jr. are accused of abducting and killing Sidney teacher Sherry Arnold January 7 while she was on a morning run.
She was missing for more than two months before Waters allegedly led authorities to her body, in a shallow grave in the Bakken oil fields of North Dakota.
Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty in the case.