Hearing set on hand-written motions from murder suspect
By James Tilson and Suzanne Dean
Oct. 6, 2017
MANTI— A hearing has been set for Oct. 11 in 6th District Court to consider 11 pages of hand written motions filed by Anthony Christensen, the defendant in the apparent domestic violence murder of Kammy Mae Edmunds.
In a hearing last Wednesday, Sept. 27, Judge Wallace Lee agreed that at the same time Christensen’s self-prepared motions are considered, the court would review a motion from his defense attorney, David Angerhofer, for appointment of a medical expert witness for the defense.
And Judge Lee agreed to also use the Oct. 11 court date to get a status report on when witnesses would be available for a preliminary hearing.
Early in the case, Christensen asked Lee to dismiss Angerhofer, his court-appointed attorney, so he could represent himself.
In a hearing on July 5, Judge Lee told Christensen defendants are better off when they have trained legal counsel and said Angerhofer had done great work for his clients. Lee denied Christensen’s motion.
Sanpete County Attorney Brody Keisel said Christensen even seemed to agree with the judge.
But right after the hearing, Christensen started filing a thicket of hand-written motions accusing the Sheriff’s Office, jail staff and county attorneys of violating his U.S. constitutional rights under the fifth and 14th amendments, violating a Utah administrative code requiring penal institutions to assist defendants with legal needs, and violating a Utah statute stating that a person who knowingly makes a false statement in a criminal matter is guilty of a misdemeanor.
Christensen even cited two U.S. Supreme Court cases in support of one of his motions.
In a hand-written motion filed July 5, Christensen asks to be compensated for property apparently seized as evidence during the murder investigation. His motion states that a vehicle, cell phone, laptop, motorcycle, jewelry and personal effects, including his “dad’s ashes,” had been seized without a search warrant.
“My cell phone contained evidence in my favor in a criminal case,” Christensen states in his motion.
Still another Christensen motion filed Sept. 17 asks the court to order Sanpete County Jail staff to provide “envelopes, postage, stamps and writing supplies” for his “legal needs in state and out of state.” The motion adds: “Including phone calls.”
Keisel said the state has every right to keep evidence it has seized in a criminal case.
“We’re absolutely confident and ready to meet any pro se motions he may file.” (A pro se motion is a motion filed by a defendant without assistance from an attorney.)
The request by Angerhofer for a medical expert witness reflected his expectation that the prosecution will present expert medical testimony supporting the contention that Kammy Edmunds died from beating injuries, including a blunt force blow to the head. A defense medical witness would be needed to refute such testimony.