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Judge denies new venue in Hartford City murder trial

HARTFORD CITY, Ind. (AP) – A Blackford County judge has denied a change of venue request from the defense attorney for an eastern Indiana man accused of killing a father and daughter in February in Hartford City.

Charles R. Whittington’s defense attorney, Chris Teague, had argued that potential jurors in the area would have “preconceived notions” about the case due to pre-trial publicity and online commentary. But The (Muncie) Star Press reports that Blackford Circuit Court Judge Dean Young denied the defense motion.

Whittington’s trial is scheduled to start on Nov. 2.

The 59-year-old from Portland is charged in the shooting deaths of 40-year-old Shane Williamson and his 14-year-old daughter.

Whittington is being held in jail without bond.