Idaho Commissioner Frustrated At Paying For Third Murder Trial

Jul 12, 2017

A county commissioner says he’s frustrated at having to pay the bill for a third trial in a murder case.

Idaho County Commissioner Skip Brandt says he’d be inclined to let a two-time convicted murderer go free, rather than have to pony up the cost of a third trial.

Brandt says Idaho County shouldn’t have to pay the bill for Mark H. Lankford’s third trial.

Lankford was convicted and sentenced to death in 1984 for beating a Texas Marine Captain and his wife to death at a campsite near Grangeville. That conviction was overturned by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

In 2008 prosecutors tried again and KTVB TV reports Lankford was found guilty a second time of both murders. He appealed again, this time to the Idaho Supreme Court which vacated the conviction and ordered a new trial.

The Lewiston Tribune reports Commissioner Brandt says the court should "just make him sign a letter saying he'll never come back to Idaho County again and ship him off to San Francisco to the 9th (U.S.) District (Court)."

The Idaho County prosecutor is preparing for a new trial.

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