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Utah Supreme Court may take up accused killer's appeal

Utah Supreme Court may take up accused killer's appeal



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Utah Supreme Court to consider appeal of murder suspect

OGDEN -- The Utah Supreme Court will decide by June 19 if they will consider an appeal by a man accused of killing two prostitutes in Ogden.

During an appearance in 2nd District Court on Wednesday, lawyers for Jacob Daniel Ethridge informed the judge that all briefings have been filed with the state's highest court.

Ethridge's attorneys are challenging a judge's decision to bind him over for trial on two counts of aggravated murder.

Ethridge, 34, is accused of killing Teresa Tingey, 43, and Rosanna Cruz, 25, during encounters along Adams Avenue on July 13, where the women were working as prostitutes.

Defense attorneys say the slayings were two separate acts, but Weber County prosecutors insist they were one crime. The two slayings together could make Ethridge eligible for the death penalty, should prosecutors decide to seek it.

The Utah Supreme Court indicated to both sides it will decide by mid-June whether to accept the appeal, a state courts spokeswoman said.

Ethridge will return to court on July 1.

Beyond the murder cases, Ethridge is facing criminal charges accusing him of assaulting a prisoner and a guard while incarcerated at the Weber County Jail. A court spokeswoman said Ethridge waived his right to a speedy preliminary hearing on those charges.

E-mail: bwinslow@ksl.com

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Ben Winslow

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