A man charged in 3rd District Court with murdering a Salt Lake woman, putting her body in a plastic storage container and driving to Missouri before being arrested will now have both his state cases heard at the same time.
Michael Doyel is charged with first-degree felony murder in the death of Deborah Jones, as well as obstruction of justice and theft, both second-degree felonies. He is also charged in federal court with kidnapping Jones, and charged in a separate case in state court with kidnapping another woman, Patricia Murray.
Thursday, Doyel made a brief court appearance for what was scheduled as a resolution hearing in the Murray kidnapping.
Wearing a yellow inmate jump suit with his hands shackled behind his back, Doyel looked around the courtroom both as he was led in and out of the room. But unlike the bizarre behavior he displayed in previous hearings, Doyel did not make any odd outbursts in court Thursday.
Judge Joseph Fratto asked Doyel if he understood he would be waiving his right to a speedy trial if he agreed to combine his preliminary hearing for the kidnapping with a preliminary hearing already scheduled in the murder case for Aug. 21.
Doyel said "OK" and nodded his head, and had a conversation with his attorney, Michael Sikora, in which he appeared to have questions about something. But he then left the courtroom without saying anything else.
In April, prosecutors say Doyel, 47, killed his former live-in girlfriend, Jones, wrapped her body in a tarp and stuffed it in a plastic storage bin. He then convinced Murray to drive with him, not telling her about the body in the car with them. The two drove to Branson, Mo., before being caught.
During his first court appearance in Missouri, Doyel had Jones' name freshly carved in his arm and then waved to TV news cameras while yelling, "I love you, Deborah Marie Jones."
At his first appearance in federal court in Salt Lake, Doyel appeared to look around the room for someone and then said Jones wasn't dead and that she was going to show up in court any minute.
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