Defense attorneys for Adam Longoria are asking Barton County District Judge Hannelore Kitts to conduct part of Thursday’s pretrial hearing away from public view.
The hearing is set to start at 9 a.m. in the Barton County Courthouse. Longoria is charged with capital murder in the death of 14-year-old Alicia DeBolt in August of 2010. Attorneys are preparing for the jury trial that is scheduled to begin on March 26.
Defense attorneys Tim Frieden and Jeffrey Wicks filed two motions Wednesday, both seeking to close portions of today’s hearing. The first request deals with three defense motions that were filed under seal, the defense’s motions to suppress certain statements and the state’s motions to admit statements made by Longoria to two Kansas Bureau of Investigation agents. Closing the courtroom will allow the parties "to properly and fully address ... various matters ... that have previously been ruled inadmissible, that could impair the ability of Mr. Longoria to receive a fair trial and/or are more prejudicial than probative," the motion states.
The second motion is similar. It asks the judge to close the proceedings during the argument of four additional defense motions filed under seal, for the same reasons. According to the motion, "The parties have worked together, and continue to do so, in an attempt to reach an agreement on these motions; however, there is no other way to address these motions and protect Mr. Longoria’s rights as set for in the United States and Kansas Constitutions than to close these proceedings."