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Triple-murder defendant won’t seek insanity defense


BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) – The defense for Andres “Andy” Avalos Jr. will not use an insanity defense but will seek to move the trial outside of Manatee County because of pretrial publicity.

Avalos is charged with killing his wife, neighbor and a local pastor.

The Bradenton Herald reports Avalos appeared before Circuit Judge Diana Moreland Thursday as attorneys for both sides argued multiple issues surrounding the death penalty. Defense attorney Andrew Crawford indicated to the court that he would not be seeking an insanity defense, despite his intention to enter some psychological evidence as it relates to medication.

Avalos is charged with three counts of first-degree murder for the 2014 slayings of Amber Avalos, Denise Potter and the Rev. Jason “Tripp” Battle.

If convicted, Avalos could face life in prison or the death penalty.