Wyoming News Update

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TRENCH COLLAPSE-RELOCATE REQUEST

JACKSON, Wyo. (AP) — A Wyoming developer wants a wrongful death lawsuit moved to a different location due to media coverage about him.

The Jackson Hole News & Guide reports Jamie Mackay says he cannot receive a fair trial in Teton County.

Mackay's attorney filed a motion for transfer of trial July 29, which says media coverage of him has been extensive and prejudiced.

The motion calls Mackay a "well-known public figure" who has been the subject of 36 News & Guide articles over 12 years.

A plaintiffs' response says Mackay's claims do not prove community members cannot be impartial.

Victoriano Garcia-Perez and Juan Baez-Sanchez suffocated in a collapsed work trench in September 2018.

The lawsuit says the developer was negligent by not providing proper safeguards, while Mackay says he is not liable.

DEATH PENALTY-DA

CASPER, Wyo. (AP) — A Wyoming prosecutor plans to seek the death penalty for the rape and killing of a Montana woman more than 30 years ago.

KTWO-AM reported Tuesday that Natrona County District Attorney Dan Itzen will seek capital punishment for 74-year-old Dale Wayne Eaton.

Eaton was convicted in 2004 for the 1988 killing of 18-year-old Lisa Marie Kimmell of Billings, Montana.

Kimmell disappeared while driving across Wyoming and her body was found in the North Platte River.

Eaton was connected to the case through DNA evidence and spent a decade on death row before a federal judge overturned his death sentence in 2014.

A federal appeals court ruled in July that Eaton can still be subject to the death penalty.

Eaton's attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday.

MISSING WOMAN

PINEDALE, Wyo. (AP) — Searchers in western Wyoming have found the body of a woman missing for over a month.

Twenty-eight-year-old Aubree Corona hadn't been seen since she was on a camping trip in the Wind River Range.

Sublette County officials said Wednesday they found Corona's body 1.3 miles (2.1 kilometers) from a 2005 Chevrolet Avalanche she was driving. Investigators say they don't know the cause of death but don't suspect foul play.

Corona had texted friends that she was lost in the Union Pass area.

A new search for Corona began when her truck was found last weekend on a remote, non-traveled road not far from Union Pass, near the Continental Divide.

An autopsy is planned.

COAL TERMINAL-SETBACK

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Would-be builders of a massive coal export terminal along the Columbia River at Longview suffered a severe setback in court.

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer reports the Washington State Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday that the Department of Natural Resources had a valid reason when it refused to lease state-owned aquatic lands to Millennium Bulk Terminals.

The DNR had noted the bankruptcy of Arch Coal, one of Millennium's owners, and the developer's initial failure to disclose that it wanted to build the largest coal terminal on the West Coast.

The terminal would receive as many as 16 coal trains a day from Wyoming, for shipment to Asian markets.

The court also said Millennium "intentionally misrepresented the scope of its plans for the property in 2011."

Supporters of the project say construction of the terminal would be accompanied by needed environmental cleanup. But environmental groups opposed Millennium.

SKIERS CITED

JACKSON, Wyo. (AP) — Four skiers have been ordered to pay fines for illegally leaving a Wyoming ski boundary and entering an area of Grand Teton National Park that had been closed because of avalanche danger last February.

Two of the skiers had to be rescued after becoming lost.

The Jackson Hole News & Guide reports that Andrew Richards of Jackson, Ruth Schwietert of Jackson, Natalie Burns of Breckenridge, Colorado, and Joseph Higgins of Portsmouth, New Hampshire, all ended up pleading guilty to violating an emergency closure. Richards also pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct.

All four received varying terms of unsupervised probation and fines and fees.

National Park Service officials said the incident put rescuers at unnecessary risk because of the dangerous backcountry avalanche conditions at the time.

TRIBAL VOTING-DRAFT BILL

CASPER, Wyo. (AP) — A draft bill has been passed in Wyoming that would make it easier for indigenous people to vote if the proposed legislation becomes law.

The Casper Star-Tribune reports that the state's Select Committee on Tribal Relations passed draft bill language Monday, and asked the Corporations, Elections & Political Subdivisions Committee to sponsor the legislation this fall.

State lawmakers say the proposed bill would allow driver's license numbers and Social Security numbers to be printed on tribal ID cards allowing tribal citizens to use one card when registering to vote.

Officials say federal law states a tribal ID can currently be used to vote if presented with a driver's license number or the last four digits of a Social Security number.

SheridanWyoming.com

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