Triple murder trial delayed due to defense attorney's murder

Kenneth Keith

DANVILLE, Ky. (WKYT) - A hearing for a triple murder suspect had to be delayed Tuesday because his defense attorney was murdered.

Danville Police say Kenneth Keith killed three people inside a store last September. His attorney, Mark Stanziano, was shot to death late last month.

Mark Stanziano would have been the attorney inside the courtroom Tuesday, representing Kenneth Keith. Instead, his chair sat empty. Kenneth Keith will continue to wait for his trial to begin.

"He's not out on the street. He's not causing any harm to anyone so it's more settling to know that he's there, that he's not out on the road to hurt someone else," explained Tony Hockensmith.

Keith is charged with killing Hockensmith's brother Michael and sister-in-law Angela. Police say Keith shot them, and customer Daniel Smith, last September inside their thrift store in Danville. Stanziano was representing Keith in the triple murder trial.

"Of course we'd like to see it over with, but we know that if the trial's not handled right that it could let somebody go that's possibly guilty," Hockensmith said.

His thoughts Tuesday weren't with the frustrations of a delay in a case, but with the woman who lost her professional and personal partner, Bethany Stanziano.

"We understand what loss is like and we wouldn't wish that on nobody."

The judge reset Tuesday's status hearing for August 4th.

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