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Murder trial ordered in death of Payson man

AMERICAN FORK — A man who prosecutors say fatally stabbed another man to death after his younger cousin was refused entry into a house party, was ordered Thursday to stand trial for murder.

Keenan John Thompson, 29, will bound over on a charge of murder, a first-degree felony, for the July 4, 2012, death of William "KC" Wright, 36, outside his Payson home. He will also stand trial in 4th District Court for obstruction of justice, a second-degree felony; purchase or transfer possession or use of a firearm by a restricted person and possession or use of a controlled substance, third-degree felonies

Thompson's defense team submitted to the case being bound over after prosecutors presented their witnesses during the third day of a preliminary hearing. Thompson then entered pleas of not guilty to the charges.

Wright was hosting a party at his house when a 15-year-old tried to enter about 4 a.m., according to investigators. Wright refused to let the underage boy in.

"He patted the boy on the arm, like, 'Hey, bud. We're not trying to be mean, but we can just get in a lot of trouble for having you here. You're underage. Come back when you're 21. We'll still be here,'" Amy Anderson, who was at the party, testified earlier this week.

The boy, Cordy Greenhalgh, had reportedly tried to get in at several points during the night. Other partygoers said he wasn't really a problem until he started screaming and threatening the homeowner. That's when the teen's older cousin drove up. A fight ensued, and Wright was fatally stabbed in the neck and abdomen.

Cordy pleaded guilty in juvenile court to obstruction of justice, a second-degree felony, and was placed in state custody in the juvenile system. A review of his case is scheduled for later this month.

Thompson is scheduled to return to court for a status conference on July 23.


Twitter: DNewsCrimeTeam