The lawyer for a Vermont man accused of killing his wife more than three years ago has asked a judge to move the first-degree murder trial out of Orleans County

NEWPORT, Vt. (AP) — The lawyer for a Vermont man accused of killing his wife more than three years ago has asked a judge to move the first-degree murder trial out of Orleans County because of what he said was an “extraordinary amount” of pre-trial publicity. Randall Swartz, 61, is accused of fatally shooting his wife Thea in their Orleans home in May of 2018. When police arrived, they found her dead and Swartz injured with a self-inflicted gunshot wound. “The publicity on Mr. Swartz has saturated the community and has created a bias against Mr. Swartz that precludes his ability to receive a fair trial in this county,” Attorney Robert Katims wrote in a motion filed on Dec. 13th. Orleans County State’s Attorney Jennifer Barrett opposed the motion, saying local media coverage alone is not sufficient to warrant a change of venue. In a separate case, Swartz pleaded guilty in 2019 to mail fraud in connection with embezzlement from his former employer, Cabot Creamery, the newspaper reported. He was sentenced to four years in prison.

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