July 12, 2013

Vermont killing suspect renews request for lawyer

The Associated Press

ST. JOHNSBURY, Vt. – A Vermont man charged along with his wife in the killing of a popular St. Johnsbury teacher isn't getting a new lawyer at the moment.

Allen Prue is led into court Wednesday, March 28, 2012 in St. Johnsbury, Vt. The snow plow driver and his wife are accused of assaulting and killing of a Vermont prep school teacher and dumping her naked body in the Connecticut rive. (AP Photo/Caledonian-Record, Michael Beniash, Pool)


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This undated identification photo shows Melissa Jenkins, who went missing Sunday night, March 25. Police say a snowplow driver and his wife assaulted and killed her. (AP Photo/St. Johnsbury Police Department)


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A judge initially dismissed Allen and Patricia Prue's requests for new attorneys in May. Allen made a second request.

Prue and defense lawyer Dan Maguire said Thursday that Prue no longer communicates with Maguire, and that Maguire could be called as a witness against Patricia Prue.

The Prues have been charged with luring Melissa Jenkins out of her home last year and killing her before dumping her body in the Connecticut River. Both have pleaded not guilty, Allen Prue to first-degree murder; Patricia Prue to aggravated murder.

"I just don't think Mr. Maguire can ethically do his duty anymore," Allen Prue said. "I don't see any way of going around this. I just completely refuse to talk to council anymore."

Maguire said he agrees with Prue that he should withdraw, The Caledonian Record reports.

"It's not something I take lightly," he said.

The judge said Thursday that she wants more information and another hearing first. Caledonia Superior Court Judge Mary Miles Teachout said Allen Prue's unwillingness to communicate with Maguire is not evidence enough that their attorney-client relationship had broken down to the point that a proper defense could not be offered. She also said she wasn't sure there was a conflict of interest in Maguire's possible role as a witness against Patricia Prue.

"It does not call into question Mr. Maguire's ability to mount a defense. I don't see a conflict," she said.


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Additional Photos

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Patricia Prue is led into court Wednesday, March 28, 2012 in St. Johnsbury, Vt. A snow plow driver and his wife are being charged in connection with the killing of a Vermont prep school teacher. (AP Photo/Caledonian-Record, Michael Beniash)


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