BOISE – Defense lawyers representing a man already on death row for the murder of a flight attendant told a jury Wednesday that there simply isn’t enough evidence to convict him of a second slaying.
Attorney Rob Chastain didn’t deny that Erick Hall was involved in the slaying of Cheryl Hanlon in 2003, the Idaho Statesman reported. Still, Chastain said during opening statements, jurors should keep an open mind about the case and about Hall.
Ada County Deputy Prosecutor Jan Bennets, meanwhile, told jurors that Hall exploited Hanlon’s kind nature, luring her to the Boise foothills where he brutally raped her, strangled her and tried to bury the evidence.
Hall is charged with first-degree murder in the rape and strangulation of Hanlon. It’s the second murder trial for Hall, who was convicted and sentenced to death in the 2000 slaying of flight attendant Lynn Henneman, whose body was discovered along the Boise greenbelt. A DNA sample taken after Hall was arrested and charged with Hanlon’s slaying linked Hall to Henneman’s murder. If he is convicted in Hanlon’s death, prosecutors would again seek the death penalty.
The trial over Hanlon’s death is expected to last a month, and 4th District Judge Thomas Neville decided to bus a jury from Gooding County after he decided local media coverage would make it difficult to impanel a jury in Ada County.
Subscribe to the Coronavirus newsletter
Get the day’s latest Coronavirus news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter.