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Judge postpones trial in motel-clerk slaying

SHARE Judge postpones trial in motel-clerk slaying

Second District Judge Glen Dawson has postponed a weeklong trial that would have started Jan. 27 in the case of David Jonathan Valken-Leduc, who is charged with killing a Woods Cross Motel 6 clerk in 1996.

Valken-Leduc, 23, has changed attorneys for a third time and now is represented by Aric Cramer of Bountiful. The judge on Monday set Feb. 3 for a pretrial conference and expectations are that a new trial date will be set.

Valken-Leduc is charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of Matthew John Whicker, who was working a night shift at the motel to support his family while attending the University of Utah.

Another young man, Todd Jeremy Rettenberger, spent five years in the Davis County Jail before reaching a plea bargain with prosecutors involving the crime. Rettenberger admitted he acted as lookout during what was apparently a robbery gone wrong. Rettenberger is expected to testify against Valken-Leduc, who Rettenberger said did the actual shooting.

Another man, Elliott Rashad Harper, also has been charged with first-degree murder in connection with Whicker's death. Harper is scheduled to go on trial in March.