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Teen to stand trial as adult in shooting

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ST. GEORGE — A 17-year-old St. George boy who police believe was involved in the shooting death of a local golf course mechanic will be tried as an adult, Washington County Attorney Eric Ludlow says.

Ludlow filed charges of murder and aggravated robbery, both first-degree felonies, against Koda Quest Lanza in 5th District Court Monday. Judge James L. Shumate set bail for Lanza, who was in the courtroom, at $250,000 cash-only on the two charges.

Lanza has been held at the Washington County Juvenile Detention Center since his arrest less than two days after the Jan. 3 killing of Ted Richard Banister, 37, of Hurricane.

Lanza was taken directly from the courtroom Monday to Purgatory Correctional Facility, where he was booked into jail. Ludlow said Lanza turned 17 the day of the shooting. Banister, whose body was found by a co-worker at 7 a.m, had been shot in the torso sometime after arriving for work around 5:30 a.m. that day, police said. Banister worked as a mechanic at the city-owned Southgate Golf Course. Co-workers and others who knew Banister described him as a "good guy" and "model employee."

Five other people, ranging in age from 15 to 26, have been charged in connection with Banister's death.

Juan Antonio Olvera, 19, St. George, is charged with aggravated murder, a capital felony, and aggravated robbery, a first-degree felony. He remains in Purgatory Correctional Facility on $500,000 cash-only bail.

Also charged with murder and aggravated robbery, both first-degree felonies, is Robert Arthur Audette, 18.