Courthouse Killings

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DECATUR, Ga. (AP) -- A Superior Court judge says he can be fair
to accused courthouse shooter Brian Nichols despite a newspaper
statement he authorized that described his colleague's death as a
"brutal murder."
Judge James Bodiford said at a hearing Thursday on a defense
motion that seeks to remove him from the case that his comments in
a newspaper article four days after the March 11th, 2005, shooting
spree and a statement he issued to the paper don't preclude him
from serving on the case.
Defense lawyer Josh Moore told Superior Court Judge Daniel
Coursey, who was assigned to hear the motion, that at the very
least there is the potential for bias on Bodiford's part.
Coursey says he will rule by next week.
Nichols is charged with killing four people after escaping from
custody at the Fulton County Courthouse while on trial for rape on
March 11th, 2005.
Nichols' lawyers say Bodiford should be removed because he told
a newspaper in a story published four days after the shooting spree
that he was friends with one of the victims, Superior Court Judge
Rowland Barnes.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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