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For the week of May 16 through May 22, 2001

Jail inmate to testify against Liebl

Express Staff Writer

A Blaine County jail inmate will be a witness for the prosecution after he reportedly heard statements made by co-inmate Eric Liebl, the suspect in a bike path attack in April.

Liebl, 18, is charged with felony aggravated assault in connection with the April 16 attack on a woman riding on the Wood River bike path north of Buttercup Road.

The role of inmate Billy A. Owens as a potential prosecution witness was revealed in a motion filed in Fifth District Court on Friday by Blaine County chief deputy prosecuting attorney Marilyn Paul.

Paul requested the disqualification of defense attorney Doug Nelson, who had been representing both Owens and Liebl. The Idaho Rules of Professional Conduct prohibit an attorney from representing a client when he has represented an opposing party.

The stateís motion was granted during a court hearing in Hailey on Monday. Jennifer Haemmerle was appointed to act as public defender for Liebl.

Owens is charged with felony eluding a police officer as the result of an April 18 police chase on Highway 75 and Gannet Road. In a phone call from Blaine County jail, Owens said he had not been offered leniency by the prosecutorís office in exchange for his testimony.

An arraignment for Liebl, at which time he will be required to plead guilty or not guilty, has been scheduled for May 21.


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