Jenkins Requests Bench Trial

Nikko Jenkins, accused killer of four, is asking that his case be heard by a judge rather than a jury.

He has formally submitted a request to waive the jury trial and a judge will hear that request next Tuesday morning. A trial date would be set after the judge rules on the request.

Jenkins is charged with the murders of Juan Uribe-Pena and Jorge Cajiga-Ruiz on August 11th, Curtis Bradford on August 19th and Andrea Kruger on August 21st. The killings began shortly after his release from prison.

Douglas County Attorney Don Kleine says whether the Jenkins case is heard by a judge or a jury, the state will make its case.

Kleine said, “It doesn't really change the burden of proof. It's just saying, there still has to be the evidence to prove the case, but in effect what happens is you're trying it to one person rather than 12."

Jenkins might have been emboldened by the acquittal of Anthony Wells last week in a bench trial. Wells had faced a weapons charge involving a gun that prosecutors say he gave to Jenkins.

The difference for Jenkins is that he will have to make his own case. He won approval last week to represent himself.

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