Yakima prosecutors drop request for closed hearing

(Information in the following story is from: Yakima Herald-Republic, http://www.yakimaherald.com)

YAKIMA, Wash. (AP) — Prosecutors in Yakima County have dropped their request to close a court hearing to vet new evidence in a triple murder case.

The motion was opposed by the Yakima Herald-Republic newspaper and three local television stations.

Prosecutors had said the new evidence could hurt Kevin Harper’s right to a fair trial. Harper was originally charged with three counts of aggravated, first-degree murder in the deaths of three members of the Goggin family in February 2011. He pleaded guilty to lesser charges under a plea agreement, but prosecutors want to nullify that agreement with the new evidence.

The Yakima Herald-Republic reports that prosecutors dropped their request Thursday under intense questioning from Yakima County Superior Court Judge Ruth Reukauf.

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