Leplat murder trial underway in Ventura County

The jury trial of Louis Leplat of Bishop is underway in Ventura County court. According to the court, the jury was selected lastlouisleplat week and discussion of evidence.

Ventura County attorney Neil Quinn represents Leplat. District Attorney Art Maillet argues for the prosecution. According to court records, attorneys have discussed the subpoena of records from Creekside Inn and Eastern Sierra Community Bank. Records also show that Dan Casteel is on the witness list. Inyo County court documents say that Casteel wore a wire and taped Leplat as he questioned him for the DA about the murder case.

Casteel had been arrested and jailed in Inyo on possession of drugs. He had walked away from a drug treatment program in the Bay Area. Casteel had called the Sierra Wave in February to say that he had not escaped from the drug program but “left” and would turn himself in before the Leplat trial since he is a witness. Casteel did, in fact, surrender to law enforcement.

Casteel claimed that the DA was “holding testimony over my head. They won’t address my cases until I testify,” he said. Ventura County court records say that the defense in the Leplat case subpoenaed probation records on Casteel. The court has allowed it. The court also indicated that Casteel will be allowed to testify and take the 5th amendment at times.

 
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