Laura Seitz, Deseret News
Curtis Allgier, center, appears in court July 13, 2007. Allgier is charged with capital murder in the shooting death of a corrections officer during an escape. He is scheduled to stand trial in June.

SALT LAKE CITY — The June trial date for Curtis Allgier, a man accused of killing a corrections officer, is still in place — for the time being.

Defense attorneys for Allgier, 32, asked Wednesday that the trial in the nearly 5-year-old case be continued because they just received approval for their expert funding Wednesday. Attorney Richard Gale told 3rd District Paul Maughan that he requested the funds for as many as five experts back in October, but the delayed approval has left them in a bind.

"There's no way they can get their expert reports done," Gale told the judge. "It will take at least three months to do what they need to do. ... We just don't think there's enough time."

He noted that the state also needs time to get its own experts, who will need time to respond to the findings of Allgier's experts. Prosecutor Vince Meister said his office doesn't even know who the potential defense experts are.

"We're five months behind because of the delay," he said.

Still, prosecutors told Maughan they were confident that the state will be ready to proceed by the set trial date in June.

The judge, who has been anxious to finally get the case to trial, asked for time to mull the request. After a short recess, Maughan asked a number of questions before deciding to hold another hearing on March 21 to see how the experts are progressing.

Allgier is charged with capital murder in the death of corrections officer Stephen Anderson during a hospital visit in June 2007. Allgier was taken into custody by police following a lengthy chase, which led to a number of felony charges, including capital murder.

Anderson was shot and killed June 26, 2007, while escorting Allgier from the prison to University Hospital.

Allgier, who is known for the tattoos that cover nearly his entire body, is accused of shooting Anderson in the head and chest during the escape attempt and then fleeing from University Hospital on foot. He is charged with using Anderson's weapon to steal a vehicle and then leading police on a high-speed chase on I-80, I-15 and I-215 at speeds exceeding 100 mph. When the vehicle's tires were spiked, Allgier continued to flee on foot, eventually running into an Arby's restaurant near 1700 South and Redwood Road.

There, police say Allgier pointed a gun at the head of an Arby's employee before a patron was able to wrest the gun from him.

Emiley Morgan

Twitter: DNewsCrimeTeam