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Minn. Teen Wants Iowa High Court To Combine Trials

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Michael Richard Swanson (credit: Jeff Heinz/The Globe Gazette)

Michael Richard Swanson (credit: Jeff Heinz/The Globe Gazette)

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DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – An attorney for a Minnesota teenager accused of killing two convenience store clerks in northern Iowa has asked the Iowa Supreme Court to combine two murder trials.

Seventeen-year-old Michael Swanson, of St. Louis Park, Minn., is charged as an adult with murder and robbery in Kossuth and Humboldt counties. He’s accused of killing a clerk in Algona on Nov. 15, then driving to Humboldt and killing another clerk. A judge ruled last month that state laws don’t allow him to merge the trials because the crimes happened in different counties and different judicial districts.

The Des Moines Register says Tuesday that defense attorney Charles Kenville argued in his appeal to the Supreme Court that the judge acknowledged that few cases address the issue, and a ruling would clarify the matter.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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