Blanco pretrial hearing July 10, state’s request for saliva granted

Alfredo Blanco

Alfredo Blanco

KINGMAN – Judge Steven Conn granted the state’s request Tuesday for a saliva sampling from first-degree murder defendant Al Blanco, and set the next pretrial hearing for July 10.

Blanco, 61, is charged with the June 2015 murder of real estate agent Sidney Cranston Jr., whose body was discovered in January on a ranch east of Kingman.

Defense attorney Robin Puchek said he’s not yet prepared to go trial on the murder case. Blanco pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Whatever plea agreements offered to Blanco have probably been stalled, which is of no surprise, Puchek said.

He’s still in the process of evidence disclosure and reviewing the autopsy report, along with polygraph test results from both Blanco and William Sanders, an acquaintance who led police to the body. He’s charged with concealing a dead body and tampering with evidence.

Sanders, free on his own recognizance, is scheduled to appear June 19 before Judge Conn.

Puchek said he has no objections to the saliva test, and would not be present for the sample collection during the week of June 5.

Saliva tests are needed for both Blanco and Sanders in case either one matches DNA from blood samples found at the scene, prosecuting attorney Bob Moon said.

“We don’t want to rule out anyone,” he said.

Blanco worked as a handyman and property manager for Cranston, who owned 43 properties in the area. He had collected about $1,600 in rent when he last met with Cranston on June 16, 2015. Cranston was missing for 19 months.