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Teen accused in Grantsville killings make first court appearance, bail set
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Teen accused in Grantsville killings make first court appearance, bail set

(Stock photo)

TOOELE – The Grantsville teen accused of killing four members of his family in their own home makes his first appearance before a judge.  However, there is some uncertainty about who will represent him for the rest of the court proceedings.

(CJ Haynie. Family photo)

Colin (CJ) Haynie had his wrists shackled to his waist when he walked into the Third District courtroom.  His father and his older brother sat silently in the first row as Haynie explained to Judge Dianna Gibson he understood the accusations against him.

Even though he’s being tried as an adult, prosecutors asked that he be placed in the juvenile detention center since it was most likely the safest place for him.  However, they want to ensure he has no chance of getting out.

“We just ask, at this time, that bail in the amount of one million dollars per victim, for a total of four million dollars, be set,” prosecutors asked.  Judge Gibson agreed.

The Tooele County Attorney’s Office had already said that Haynie would not be eligible for the death penalty because he’s still a minor.  However, they said they would try to get him sentenced to life without the possibility of parole.  Haynie’s current attorney, Richard Van Wagoner, says prosecutors aren’t allowed to ask for that much.

“After May of 2016, the legislature said if you’re under the age of 18 and it’s aggravated murder charges and you’re convicted, they can’t seek life without parole,” he said, adding that the maximum penalty would be 25 years to life.

It’s unclear if Van Wagoner will continue to serve as Haynie’s lawyer.  Van Wagoner says an attorney will have to be appointed through the Utah Indigent Defense Commission because Haynie has no money to build a defense with.

“He doesn’t have a job.  He doesn’t have a prior job.  He doesn’t have a home.  He doesn’t have a car.  He doesn’t a prior car.  He has zero,” Van Wagoner said.  When asked if Haynie’s family would be helping with expenses, Van Wagoner added, “I don’t know that they’ve got the resources.”

The next hearing has been set for February 4.  Neither the prosecutors nor Haynie’s family had any comment.