UPDATE: Trial of man accused in garage fire murder stays in Linn - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

UPDATE: Trial of man accused in garage fire murder stays in Linn County

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CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL) -

The trial for Timothy Evans, who is accused of 1st degree murder in the death of Gina Frederiksen, theft, burglary, and arson, is staying in Linn County. This comes after a hearing was held today, where Evan's lawyer argued that pre-trial publicity would not allow his client a fair trial.

The judge ultimately deciding that the pre-trial publicity was not enough to warrant a change in venue for the trial. The Judge did however agree to pre-trial screening of the jury using questionnaires, to ensure they do not have any prejudice or bias in this case.  

During this hearing the State requested that the trial for alleged murder, theft, and arson occurring at I Street SW on April 29th be combined with the trial of the alleged burglaries around Haven Court SW that same early morning.  The State argued that the alleged burglary at Haven Court, helped establish a 'common scheme' in the alleged murder, theft, and arson on I Street SW. 

The Judge, however, denied the request to combine the two trials. Evans will now stand two separate traials in Linn County, one in the alleged case of 1st degree murder in the death of Gina Frederiksen as well as theft and arson. The other trial for burglary after surveillance camera caught Evans breaking into a woman's garage just hours before he is accused of killing Frederiksen. 

The trial in the case of 1st degree murder, theft. and arson is scheduled to be first, in October. 

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Timothy Evans wants his trial be moved out of Linn County according to court records. 

Evans is accused of breaking into a detached garage, assaulting 38-year-old Gina Frederiksen and then setting the garage on fire. 

It happened in April on the SW side of Cedar Rapids. 

Police don't believe Frederiksen and Evans knew each other. 

She was pulled from the fire by an officer but died a short time later at a local hospital. 

The state medical examiner ruled her death a homicide. 

Evans is facing charges of murder, burglary, arson and robbery for the incident. 

Court records indicate Evans is claiming diminished responsibility in the case. 

He has plead not guilty. 

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