After flip-flopping on firing his public defenders, the trial for a man accused of killing a Roy mother and son more than three years ago is back on track.
Jeremy Valdes, 36, is now set for trial in September in 2nd District Court in the deaths of Matthew Roddy, 30, and Pamela Knight Jeffries, 53.
On Nov. 25, 2009, Valdes allegedly fatally stabbed Roddy during an argument about stolen prescription drugs. Police believe Valdes then beat Jeffries, Roddy’s mother, before leaving her unconscious with a plastic trash bag around her head and stuffing her and Roddy into a closet.
Valdes is charged with two counts of aggravated murder, which is punishable by death. He also has been charged with joyriding, obstructing justice and two counts of abuse or desecration of a human body, all third-degree felonies.
Miranda Statler, Valdes’ girlfriend, also was charged with helping stuff the bodies in a closet, stealing Roddy’s car and lying to police, but she was not charged with murder. She has been sentenced to spend up to 20 years in prison.
Valdes was originally set to go to trial on Jan. 8, but in early December, Valdes decided he wanted to fire his public defenders and represent himself during the trial.
However, he’d had a change of heart by Dec. 18, when he filed a motion withdrawing his request for new counsel or to represent himself.
Valdes has attempted to fire his court-appointed counsel on more than one occasion. In August, he filed a similar motion asking for new lawyers, but attorney Randall Marshall said at that time they were working through Valdes’ concerns.
In November, Valdes’ mother, Marilee Valdes, wrote to Judge Mark DeCaria that attorneys appointed to represent her son were not able to get promised expert witnesses and were not thoroughly interviewing witnesses.
A six-week trial is set to begin Sept. 27.
Copyright 2013 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.