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District Attorney drops objection to change of venue in Harvey Updyke trial

Updyke leaving his bail bondsman in February… in orange and blue??? (Julie Bennett / jbennett@al.com).

Fearing a conviction could be overturned on the grounds it should have been moved (there’s very recent precedent in the state’s appellate court), Lee County district attorney Robbie Treese has dropped his objection to a change of venue in the Harvey Updyke trial.

In the motion he filed Monday, Treese also noted the scheduling of the final Toomer’s Oaks rolling on April 20 could once again thwart jury selection. Updyke’s trial is scheduled to begin April 8.

Treese writes. “Wherefore, considering each of the factors… the state withdraws its previous objections to the motion for change of venue and encourages this honorable court to enter an order consistent with the selection of a suitable, lawful and reasonable alternative.”

In a change of venue request filed in August 2012, Everett Wess, Updyke’s attorney at the time, suggested that, if the defenses’ preferred location of Jefferson County wasn’t doable, Huntsville and / or Mobile (or somewhere in Jefferson County) “may provide appropriate sites where a fair and impartial trial may be held.”

“It appears this case permeates multiple aspects of potential juror’s lives in Lee County Alabama and an impartial jury cannot be impaneled,” Wess wrote.

h/t al.com.

Related: Updyke confession on front of page of this week’s Plainsman.

More on the the Toomer’s Oaks: Toomer’s Corner rollings didn’t start with Punt, Bama, Punt, says History / Did Auburn students celebrate Bear Bryant’s death by rolling Toomer’s Corner?


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