Man charged in Pa. slayings of 3 seeks trial move

WILKES-BARRE, Pa. (AP) — A man facing trial in the slayings of three people, including a 15-year-old girl, during what northeastern Pennsylvania authorities call a botched drug deal is asking that the proceedings be moved to another county.

Luzerne County prosecutors have said they plan to seek the death penalty against 19-year-old Shawn Hamilton of Nanticoke in the July shootings in Plymouth. Defense attorneys are seeking a venue change and want the death penalty taken off the table.

Attorneys for Hamilton’s 16-year-old half brother asked Friday that his case be moved to juvenile court.

Authorities allege that the two killed 21-year-old Bradley Swartwood, 17-year-old Nicholas Maldonado and 15-year-old Lisa Abaunza in a July robbery. Another man was wounded.

Hamilton told reporters in October that his brother was innocent and that he acted in self-defense.

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