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Trial scheduled for Alaska man accused of killing girlfriend

February 26, 2018

KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) — The murder trial for an Alaska man accused of killing his girlfriend has been scheduled for Aug. 8, but the man’s defense attorney has asked for the trial not to be held on Prince of Wales Island.

Twenty-nine-year-old Albert Macasaet III is accused in the July 2016 murder of 27-year-old Judylee Guthrie, the Ketchikan Daily News reported .

Macasaet’s attorney Jay Hochberg has requested the trial be held off the island, saying the small community of Klawock could be biased against his client. He highlighted an assault of Macasaet’s brother that took place after Guthrie’s death.

In November 2017, police responded to reports of an assault at the Klawock home of Macasaet’s brother, 58-year-old Albert Macasaet Jr. Police statements accuse Angela Jean Frank, 27, and Delbert Vincent Bitonti, 37, of assaulting Macasaet’s brother in retaliation for the death of Guthrie.

Both were indicted on first-degree assault charges in addition to second-degree assault and first-degree burglary.

“The fact that their assault was directed at a completely innocent victim who had done nothing to anyone is particularly troubling,” Hochberg said. “If people are willing to viciously assault an innocent man merely because he is related to my client, then how many other people would be willing to lie during jury selection about their bias?”

Macasaet was indicted in 2016. He engaged in a 10-hour standoff with law enforcement before being arrested. He is being held on $100,000 bail.

Klawock Police Department, which has just a few officers, has not responded to calls from the Daily News.

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This story has been corrected to show that Albert Macasaet Jr. and Albert Macasaet III are brothers, not father and son.

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Information from: Ketchikan (Alaska) Daily News, http://www.ketchikandailynews.com

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