Death penalty focus in case of Neb. girl's killer - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Death penalty focus in case of Neb. girl's killer

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DES MOINES (AP)--An attorney for a man charged with sexually assaulting and killing a 3-year-old Nebraska girl is trying to keep his client from facing the death penalty.

In a motion filed this week, Kelly Breen argues Dakota County prosecutors' attempts to seek Melecio Camacho-De Jesus' execution by lethal injection is unconstitutional. Breen says that's because a new Nebraska law making lethal injection the state's method of carrying out death sentences doesn't take effect until Sept. 1.

Breen argues the harshest punishment his client can face is life in prison.

Twenty-nine-year-old Camacho-De Jesus of Sioux City, Iowa, is charged with first-degree murder, a capital offense, and burglary. He is accused of killing Evelyn Verdugo Paniagua on May 23 in her South Sioux City home.

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