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Murder Trial Postponed

Pat Holden is hoping for justice for her brother-in-law Richard.

"He was just a humble person who would not hurt anybody," said Pat. But after four years of waiting the first degree murder trial for Amber Dalton has been put on hold. 

"We naturally wanted to call the case and have some resolution," said Greg Newman, Transylvania County's District Attorney.

"But what we're running into is like a lot of counties in the state. Transylvania county is a small county but a growing county."

Because it was once such a small community the Brevard courthouse only has one courtroom. 

A civil case related to a multi-million dollar estate is taking weeks longer than expected in that courtroom. So the murder trial for Amber Dalton could not begin on its scheduled first day Monday November 4th.

Richard Holden was stabbed and killed August 21, 2009. His brother Perry who wanted to speak to News Thirteen was unable to due to a sudden illness that required hospitalization. His wife, Richard's sister-in-law spoke on his behalf of the family's anguish waiting for trial.

"They're the ones suffering because there's nothing being done," said Pat. Nothing has been shown to them that a trial is going to come to a head."

Since the main courthouse in Transylvania county was occupied, one option considered was to use the courtroom inside the Transylvania County jail building. But the Judge presiding over the impending trial, and Amber Dalton's defense attorney did not approve for a variety of reasons including constitutional rights said Greg Dalton, Amber's attorney(no relation).

"It had steel doors," said Tony Dalton. "It was like trying a case in a bunker or a jail cell."

Another option considered was trying the case in Hendersonville, but that too, presented complications including bussing in jurors and witnesses from Brevard where the alleged murder took place. 

"I have issued approximately 30 subpoenas for people to show up somewhere in Transylvania county," said Tony Dalton.

Richard Holden's girlfriend, Naomi Barker was also stabbed during the crime but survived. She is the key eyewitness to the murder and will testify against Amber Dalton who's attorney has filed an insanity plea in addition to pleas related to prescription pills she was on prescribed by an Asheville doctor.

The trial has been rescheduled for February 2014 in Brevard.

by Kimberly King

Follow Kim on Twitter @KimKingReports


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