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Hearing held for Bangor murder case to hold separate trials

An attorney on the case believes a statement may come out during the trial which might cause issues if the case continues on as a joint trial.

BANGOR, Maine — A hearing was held Tuesday morning on Zoom regarding the murder trials of Joseph “J.J.” Johnson and Cote Choneska.

The two men are charged with intentional and knowing murder in the death of 59-year-old Bert Conley inside of Conley’s Essex Street home the night of October 31, 2019.

Johnson’s attorney, Jeff Silverstein, filed a motion to have separate trials because of a statement that was made by the other defendant, Cote Choneska.

Silverstein believes a statement may come out during the trial which might cause issues during the trial if the case continues on as a joint trial.

Assistant Maine Attorney General Lisa Bogue argued for the state that there are many factors in favor of a joint trial and they don’t believe there is any evidence of prejudice to hold separate trials.

Justice William Anderson said he would rule on the matter in the near future. 

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