Codefendant expected to testify in sentencing of triple murderer

Attorneys on Wednesday filed requests for jury instructions for the penalty-phase trial of a man convicted of killing a Golden Valley family six years ago.

A Mohave County jury will deliberate the case of Frank Anderson beginning Nov.

18 during a seven-day trial before Superior Court Judge James Chavez.

Anderson, 52, Bobby Poyson and Kimberly Lane were convicted of murdering Leta Kagen, her 15-year-old son, Robert Delahunt, and Roland Wear at Kagen's Golden Valley residence in 1996.

Anderson will be the first convicted murderer in Mohave County to be sentenced by a jury under a new state law enacted in August.

The law states that a jury instead of a judge must first weigh aggravating and mitigating factors and then decide whether a defendant should be put to death or serve a life sentence.

The special law was enacted after the U.S.

Supreme Court ruled a judge-imposed death penalty was unconstitutional.

The judge ruled in an Arizona case.

Anderson's attorney, Thomas Kehm, and Chief Deputy Mohave County Attorney Jace Zack filed their versions of jury instructions, which would be incorporated into Chavez's rough draft.

Kehm's proposed jury instruction for considering aggravated factors did not to define "eliminating a witness" as heinous or deprived.

Anderson murdered Delahunt first then murdered Kagen and Wear several hours later.

Kehm also asked Chavez whether Lane, who is expected to be brought back as a state witness, can be brought back a week earlier so he could interview her.

Zack said he does not plan to bring back Poyson as a witness.

Beginning Wednesday, about 80 potential jurors will receive written questionnaires.

The trial will begin the following Monday.

In 2000, the Arizona Supreme Court struck down Anderson's death sentence following his first murder trial in 1998.

Anderson was again in October 2001 of three counts of first-degree murder, one count of armed robbery and one count of conspiracy of murder.

On Aug.

12, 1996, Lane lured Delahunt into a trailer where Anderson cut his throat, then assisted Poyson in crushing the youth's head with bricks.

Anderson also assisted Poyson in shooting Kagen and Wear later that night.

The three codefendants then stole Wear's truck, and Anderson, after dropping Lane and Poyson off near Chicago, was stopped and arrested driving the truck in Southern Illinois.

Poyson, 25, was convicted and sentenced to death in November 1999.

He remains on Arizona's death row.

Lane, 19, was also convicted of murder, but the Arizona Court of Appeals overturned her conviction and the state Supreme Court upheld that decision.

Prior to her second trial, she pleaded guilty to lesser charges and received a reduced sentence.