Photo by Hubble Ray Smith.
KINGMAN – Murder defendant Alfredo Gerardo Blanco appeared before Mohave County Superior Court Judge Rick Lambert Monday looking much older than the 61-year-old man who was arrested in January for the death of real estate agent Sidney Cranston Jr.
His beard has grown long and gray, his countenance bears deepening weariness with each court appearance and deputies bring him in and out of the courtroom in a wheelchair.
Lambert, who has taken over the caseload of retired Judge Steven Conn, gave attorneys eight more weeks to review evidence in the first-degree murder case, setting the next pretrial hearing for Sept. 11.
The state’s prosecuting attorney told Lambert that the discovery process, or the process of gathering and disclosing evidence, is still ongoing and that an eight-week continuance would be acceptable for both sides.
The state has sent the defense another 80 pages of evidence disclosure from the FBI, bringing the total to more than 700 pages.
Blanco has been indicted on charges that he killed Cranston on June 19, 2015, and buried his body on a ranch about 40 miles east of Kingman. The body went missing for 19 months.
Blanco worked as a handyman and property manager for Cranston and was last seen with him on June 16, 2015. He had collected $1,600 in rent payments.
Bill Sanders, an associate of Blanco, led FBI agents to the body on a 240-acre ranch owned by Don Bishop. Sanders is charged with concealment of evidence and tampering with a dead body, and is free on his own recognizance. He appears in court under sheriff’s protection.