The attorney for Israel Mireles, who has been charged with capital murder, rape and aggravated criminal sodomy, has filed a motion to dismiss the capital murder charge in exchange for a first-degree murder charge.
The body of Zane was found little more than a week after she disappeared during Thanksgiving weekend 2007, 50 miles east of the town of El Dorado, Kan., where she was allegedly last seen leaving a bar with a man matching Mireles’ description, according to witness testimony.
Zane’s birth name was Emily Sander.
The bar’s bouncer testified in court that he saw Mireles and Zane leave together as did a community college classmate of Sander’s who identified Mireles in court as the man Sander left with.
The suspect, who fled and was extradited from Mexico, had been living in a local motel, where the hotel owner discovered Mireles’ room had been in a shambles and had evidence of blood spatter.
Mireles faces life in prison without parole — but not the death penalty — because his extradition terms forbid it.
His trial is scheduled to begin Feb. 8.