Man Charged in Deputy’s Death Wants Trial Moved

Adam Sanchez is charged with deliberate homicide for the Aug. 14 death of Deputy Joe Dunn

By Molly Priddy


Attorneys for a Great Falls man charged with killing a Cascade County deputy by deliberately swerving his vehicle into the officer during a chase are asking for a change of venue for his trial.

Public defenders Nichole Lovich and Jennifer Streano filed the motion Tuesday on behalf of Adam Sanchez Jr., 40, who is charged with deliberate homicide for the Aug. 14 death of Deputy Joe Dunn, the Great Falls Tribune reported.

The public has been “overly exposed to Sanchez’s prior criminal history,” which has great potential to further prejudice jurors against Sanchez, the motion argues.

It also said cases involving law enforcement officers are some of the few that warrant a venue change.

Judges can move a trial to another county, bring in outside jurors or take any other action necessary to ensure a fair trial.

District Judge Dirk Sandefur hasn’t ruled on the motion.

He also faces charges of assault with a weapon, assault on a peace officer and two counts of criminal endangerment.

Sanchez had been held in the Chouteau County jail in Fort Benton with his bail set at $5 million because the Cascade County jail is run by the sheriff’s department.

He was sentenced in September to 20 years in prison without the possibility of parole for an unrelated case involving a 2013 police chase. He is now an inmate at the Montana State Prison, according to Department of Corrections records.

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