Wednesday, January 14, 2009

High court moves rape case to Boise

New trial date not yet set in Marsalis case

Express Staff Writer

Jeffrey J. Marsalis

The Idaho Supreme Court has moved the trial of accused rapist Jeffrey J. Marsalis to Boise.

When the trial will be held is still undetermined, but a scheduling conference will be held later this month to nail down a date.

The high court's order to hold the trial in Boise followed the granting of a change of venue last month by Blaine County 5th District Court Judge Robert J. Elgee. Prosecuting Attorney Jim Thomas and defense counsel Douglas Nelson filed a stipulated agreement with the court wherein they agreed that pretrial publicity in Blaine County necessitated holding the trial elsewhere.

Marsalis, 35, is charged in Blaine County with raping a then-21-year-old woman at his Sun Valley condominium on Oct. 9, 2005. A grand jury indictment against him alleges that the woman was incapacitated at the time, either by alcohol or a so-called "date rape drug."

Marsalis, who remains incarcerated in the Blaine County jail, was extradited to Idaho in August from Pennsylvania, where he is serving a 21-year prison sentence for convictions in Philadelphia in 2007 on two counts of sexual assault and one count of unlawful restraint. He had been accused of drugging and raping seven women.

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