- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 28, 2018

PHOENIX (AP) - A judge in a serial killing case against a former bus driver in Phoenix declined Wednesday to bar authorities from releasing any further video of the suspect in his jail cell.

Attorneys for Aaron Juan Saucedo sought the order while the judge considers their request to take the death penalty off the table as punishment after video was released to news media in January.

Saucedo is accused of nine nighttime killings that terrified many residents of the city.

Superior Court Judge David Cunanan scheduled an April 13 hearing for attorneys to argue over the death penalty issue.

Defense attorneys said in court papers that the release of the video to The Arizona Republic and other news organizations violated their client’s constitutional right to bodily privacy.

Saucedo has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder and other charges in attacks that killed nine people and wounded two others during a nearly one-year period that ended in July 2016. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty in eight of the nine killings.

Police said the victims included a 21-year-old man whose girlfriend was pregnant with their son, and a 12-year-girl who was shot to death along with her mother and a friend of the woman.

The jailhouse video showed Saucedo talking on the phone and looking out of a cell-door window.

Prosecutor Juan Martinez said his office didn’t release the footage.

The Republic reported the video was released by the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, which runs the county’s jails.

Saucedo has not attended any of the last seven hearings in the case.

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Follow Jacques Billeaud at twitter.com/jacquesbilleaud. His work can be found at https://www.apnews.com/search/jacques%20billeaud.


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