- Associated Press - Thursday, March 28, 2019

DAWSON, Iowa (AP) - An Oskaloosa man charged in the stabbing death of a college basketball player in Oskaloosa will go to trial next month after a judge rejected his “stand your ground” defense.

Television station KCCI reports that the judge on Tuesday denied 24-year-old Luke VanHemert’s argument that he was defending himself when he fatally stabbed 22-year-old William Penn player Marquis Todd in March 2018.

Iowa’s “stand your ground” law, enacted in 2017, says a person doesn’t have to retreat before using deadly force if he or she reasonably thinks his or her life is being threatened.

VanHemert’s lawyers argued that he was defending himself during a fight that began with a car crash and that VanHemert should be exempt from prosecution. But the judge says Iowa’s law does not apply in the case.

VanHemert’s second-degree murder trial is set to begin April. 9.


Information from: KCCI-TV, http://www.kcci.com

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