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Indianapolis house blast suspect wants change of venue for murder trial

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The Associated Press
Thursday, January 24, 2013 - 12:56 pm

INDIANAPOLIS — An Indianapolis woman charged with helping rig a deadly house explosion wants her murder trial to be held in another county.

Attorney James Voyles filed a motion for a change of venue Thursday for Monserrate Shirley, whose home in a neighborhood on the city's south side exploded on Nov 10. The blast destroyed 33 homes and killed a couple living next to Shirley's house.

Voyles argues that Shirley can't get a fair trial in Marion County due to public outrage, bias and media coverage.

No hearing on the motion was scheduled.

Forty-seven-year-old Shirley, her 43-year-old boyfriend Mark Leonard and his 54-year-old brother Robert Leonard Jr. face charges of murder, arson and conspiracy. Their trial is set for March 4.

Prosecutors are considering seeking the death penalty in the case.