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Mark Herrington Superior Court murder trial delayed until early next year

The trial of a man accused of killing his former fiancee and conspiring with others to have his ex-wife killed was delayed Monday morning by Superior Court Judge John Allen.

An agreement between the prosecution and Mark Herrington's defense lawyer was reached a couple of weeks ago to postpone the trial until early next year, Assistant District Attorney Crawford Seals said.

"There will be a lot of witnesses coming from other states and this would have been a terrible time to do it," Seals said.

This is the second delay for Herrington, who has been in jail since his arrest almost three years ago. The trial was originally scheduled for October.

Herrington faces several charges including murder, concealing the death of another person, conspiracy to commit murder and two charges of criminal solicitation to commit murder.

He is accused in the slaying of his former fiancee Karen Carter, who was found strangled and tied up in a blanket in the trunk of her car in January 2007. Two months later, Herrington was also arrested on charges of conspiracy to commit murder and conspiracy, based on allegations that he tried to hire people to kill his ex-wife in 2005 and 2006.

Herrington appeared before Allen in April to try to get a bond for his murder charge and have bonds totaling $302,500 reduced. He had already been in jail 27 months and his attorney Richard Hagler argued that the District Attorney’s Office should be asked why it was taking so long to get a hearing. Herrington was denied bond.

Harrington also made a court appearance in July when potential conflicts of interest by Hagler were discussed. Hagler had previously represented the victim in a custody dispute.

At the time, Herrington told the judge he wanted to retain Hagler as his attorney

Seals, who took over the case earlier this year after former District Attorney Gray Conger was defeated by current District Attorney Julia Slater, said this is a "complicated case."

"This case is a logistical nightmare," Seals said. "I think the delay will benefit both parties."

Seals did not know when the trial would next appear on Allen's docket.

"Everybody wants to get this taken care of," he said.

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