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Archive for Sunday, May 13, 2001

Judge to decide manslaughter case

May 13, 2001

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— A caretaker who took two disabled men on an unauthorized trip that led to their heat-related deaths has waived his right to a jury trial.

Cedric D. James, 26, of Kansas City, is charged with two counts of involuntary manslaughter in the deaths of Steven Warren and Michael O'Neal. The two men, who lived at a Merriam group home, died in September after being left in a car at Kansas City's Swope Park when the temperature exceeded 100 degrees.

Jury selection in James' case was scheduled to begin Monday. Instead, James waived his right to a jury trial Friday.

The case will be decided by Johnson County District Judge John Anderson III.

Defense attorney Robert Kuchar and Assistant Dist. Atty. Scott Toth asked the judge to rule based on evidence and testimony that was presented at a preliminary hearing.

James retains his right to appeal the case. Anderson will hear both sides and rule on May 30.

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