Green sentencing hearing rescheduled, moved

A sentencing hearing in the case of convicted murderer Demarqus Green that had been scheduled for Oct. 26 has been rescheduled to next month, but will be held at the Kenai Courthouse instead of in Homer as previously planned. On a motion by Kenai District Attorney Scot Leaders, Kenai Superior Court Judge Anna Moran changed the time and place to 9 a.m. Nov. 13 at the Kenai Courthouse.

In May, a Homer jury found Green guilty of second-degree murder and tampering with physical evidence in the killing of Demian Sagerser. Green, 23, admitted to shooting Sagerser, then 40, on July 7, 2012, at Sagerser’s Stariski Creek home during a marijuana drug deal, but claimed he shot Sagerser in self defense when, he said, Sagerser attacked him with a utility knife. The jury rejected that argument, but found Green not guilty of first-degree murder — that he intended to kill Sagerser — and of first-degree robbery. The state claimed Green robbed Sagerser of marijuana and cash.

Sentencing hearings are commonly held in the community where the crime occurred. Green is from Anchorage and has no ties to the lower Kenai Peninsula, but Sagerser grew up in Homer and had lived in the Anchor Point area for the past 20 years. Green’s attorney, Adam Franklin, said Green did not oppose moving the sentencing hearing to Kenai.

Marjorie Bantz, Sagerser’s mother, said she was writing a letter to Judge Moran objecting to the change of venue.

“Right now they’re having it in Kenai, which is not acceptable for me. They (the court) offered to send a taxi down for me, but what about the other 10 to 12 people who wanted to attend?” she said.

Moran has not yet ruled on a motion for a new trial by Franklin. Franklin said it would make sense for Moran to rule on that motion before next month’s sentencing.

On the evidence tampering charge, the jury found Green guilty of destroying evidence from the shooting, including a red jacket a game camera set up by Sagerser showed Green wearing. Green’s girlfriend, Nancy Modeste, had earlier pleaded guilty to evidence tampering.

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