Utah prison inmate James Earl Blair is seeking to reverse his 12-year-old guilty plea to first-degree murder charges.
Blair appeared in 4th District Court in Fillmore for an evidentiary hearing, seeking to withdraw his guilty plea in the murder of Robyn LeRoy Halsey, 30, of Scipio, Millard County, March 20, 1978. The body was found near U.S. 50, south of Scipio. The victim had been killed with his own shotgun.Blair is now claiming that Eastwood William Lloyd Eastwood, Belknap, Ill., fired the fatal shotgun blast.
Blair, of Kansas City, Kan., was hitchhiking with Eastwood when they were given a ride by Halsey. He pleaded guilty to first-degree murder to avoid a possible death penalty and was sentenced five years to life in prison on Jan. 4, 1979.
Eastwood pleaded guilty to second-degree murder through negotiations and testified against Blair in a preliminary hearing. After serving some time in Utah, he was transferred to Nevada. Judge Ray M. Harding ordered attorneys to file briefs and took the matter under advisement.