Minot News

Murder Case Moving Toward Trial

Minot, ND - A Minot man accused in the August stabbing death of his estranged girlfriend was denied some changes in his case today.

27-year-old Bradley Morales has pleaded "not guilty" and sought to have charges dismissed because there was no grand jury empaneled to hand down an indictment.
He also repeated a request for a trial in front of a judge only - with no jury.

Judge Doug Mattson refused both requests.

The Minot Police detective investigating the stabbing testified in February that Morales admitted to him that he had stabbed 25-year-old Sharmaine Leake, who died six days after the attack.

Judge Mattson agreed with the defense that a hearing on whether or not certain evidence will be allowed in the trial should be closed.

(Steven Mottinger, Defense Attorney) "I think there are legitimate concerns in regard to Mr. Morales's right to a fair trial, to an impartial jury, and I am concerned about media coverage in regard to matters that may or may not be admissible at trial."

Judge Mattson will issue a written decision on the evidence question soon.
The trial for Morales is scheduled for mid-May.

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