A 3rd District judge refused Monday to accept another motion that condemned killer Ralph LeRoy Menzies be granted a new trial.
Instead, Judge Raymond Uno ordered that representatives be sent to California to meet with the court reporter to try and clean up the transcript from Menzies' original 1988 trial.Defense attorneys contend the transcript is riddled with so many errors that it is impossible for an appellate court to review the case. Richard Uday asked Uno to grant the new trial, but prosecutors say the errors are not serious enough to warrant trying the case again.
Uno said he will decide whether a new trial is warranted after representatives for the defense and prosecution sit down with Tauni Lee and try to correct the errors that were made.
Uno said he made the decision after conferring with Michael Murphy, the presiding district judge. Uno spoke with Murphy because he is retiring at the end of the year and the case may have to be presented before another judge.
"My opinion is that we should do everything possible to try and complete that record," he said. "The best thing to do is to have one representative from each side go to California and have that matter completed."
Menzies has been sentenced to die for the kidnapping and killing of Maurine Hunsaker. The mother of four was kidnapped from her gas-attendant job on Feb. 23, 1986. Her body was discovered two days later in Big Cottonwood Canyon. She had been strangled and her throat had been slit.
The Utah Supreme Court ruled last week that Uno must make a decision in the case by Nov. 15.