Hearing set for El Reno man charged in 5 killings

EL RENO — Prosecution and defense attorneys are set to review the last remaining pretrial motions in the case of an Oklahoma man accused of the strangulation deaths of a woman and her four children.

BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Published: September 4, 2012
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EL RENO — Prosecution and defense attorneys are set to review the last remaining pretrial motions in the case of an Oklahoma man accused of the strangulation deaths of a woman and her four children.

Tuesday's hearing for 29-year-old Joshua Durcho is the last one scheduled before jury selection begins Sept. 17 for his first-degree murder trial.

Durcho is charged in the January 2009 deaths of 25-year-old Summer Rust and her children — 3-year-old Evynn Garas, 4-year-old Teagin Rust and 7-year-old daughters Kirsten and Autumn Rust — in the family's El Reno apartment. Autopsies indicated that all of the victims were strangled. Durcho has pleaded not guilty.

Last month, Canadian County District Judge Gary Miller rejected defense claims that Durcho is mentally retarded, which will allow prosecutors to seek the death penalty.

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