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Kansas man mounts criminal defense in double murder case

A Kansas man who has been charged in connection with the deaths of two Lenexa men is arguing that he was forced to kill the victims after he was kidnapped. The man, age 27, faces two charges of first-degree murder for his alleged role in the violent crime. The man will be mounting a criminal defense in Kansas court, even though he is contending that the act was one of desperation after he was victimized by a crime.

Official reports show that the man says that two strangers abducted him from his home in Lenexa in early July. The two men drove him to a nearby home and took him into the basement. The defendant says that he was able to escape by stabbing both men in the stomach while attempting to escape. However, he was seriously wounded by a gunshot in the process. The man's wife has told officers that she remembers the defendant sleeping on a couch instead of in bed on the night of the encounter, though she did not hear any commotion at the time of the alleged abduction.

Prosecutors in the case argue that the defendant killed the men while they were attempting a robbery and burglary. Evidence shows that the man's vehicle was spotted around town on the evening of the July 9 attack. If the man chooses to take his case to trial, a jury will have to decide whether his story matches up with the video surveillance evidence that documents his vehicle's location.

Defendants who act in self-defense may still end up facing criminal charges, depending on the nature of the alleged violations. These defendants still deserve the fair protection of the courts, no matter whether they are accused of murder or manslaughter. In some cases, proceeding to trial makes sense, considering the available evidence; for other defendants, a plea is more appropriate. Remember that no two criminal cases are exactly the same, so special consideration is required for every individual criminal defense.

Source: The Kansas City Star, "Lenexa murder suspect says he was the victim of a kidnapping" Tony Rizzo, Aug. 01, 2014

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