NEW INFO: James Emerson Murder Trial Jury Will Come from Marathon County

The jury for the man accused of being party to the murder of Rhonda Mertes will come from from Marathon County.

James Emerson's attorneys asked for the change of venue because of all the news coverage of the case.

But Marathon County Judge Greg Grau ruled against them this morning, saying jurors will be told not to use any information from outside of the courtroom to reach their verdict.

The judge also ruled against the defense motion asking prosecutors to give them more specifics about the theory of the crime.

He did however, order the prosecution to turn over all it's evidence unedited.

Some lines on the 7000-pages of notes have been blacked out, prosecutors say because of federal privacy laws.

The defense will now be able to go see them, but the judge will have final say on whether the information can be used in the case.

Finally, the judge accepted a motion for Emerson's attorney's to withdraw from the case.

They cited a conflict of interest, but did not give more specifics.

Prosecutors say it should not delay the start of the trial, scheduled for next spring.

Emerson is accused of killing Rhonda Mertes back in 1999.

He was arrested this spring after investigators say they matched his DNA to DNA found on the victim's body.


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