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Alleged Girl Scout killer requests bench trial

Chippewa County (WQOW) — Colten Treu, the man accused of killing three Girl Scouts and a mother last November, has requested a judge decide his fate.

Prosecutors said Treu was huffing aerosol fumes when his truck went off the road and hit the Girl Scout troop last year.

Related: Colten Treu pleads not guilty

Treu is charged with 10 felonies, including four counts of homicide by intoxicated use of a vehicle.

Treu’s attorneys once again asked the judge to select a jury pool outside of Chippewa County. They claimed they would not be able to get a fair trial because of extensive media coverage and inflammatory publicity. However, Chippewa County Judge James Isaacson sided with the prosecution in denying Treu’s request.

Treu’s attorneys then stated that because they could not get jurors from another county, they wanted to take a jury out of the equation.

“Given that scenario, your honor, and our frustration with the change of venue motion being denied again at this particular time, Colten would like to request that a bench trial be conducted and not a jury trial,” said defense attorney Travis Satorius.

Related: Alleged Girl Scout killer’s interrogation will be shown to the jury

Chippewa County District Attorney Wade Newell said the state will not waive its right to a jury trial. He said both sides have to agree and he believes this case should be decided by a jury of Treu’s peers.

Judge Isaacson decided not to address the motion for a bench trial at Friday’s hearing, telling the court that it is too big of a decision and he’d like more time to consider the motion.

Treu returns to court on December 6 for another motion hearing.

Stephen Kelley

Stephen Kelley joined the News 18 team in August 2006. He is currently the Executive Producer and an Evening Anchor.

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