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Murder Trial Begins for Fairbanks Man Who Rejected Manslaughter Plea Deal

Published On: Mar 17 2014 12:45:00 PM AKDT
Fairbanks: Appeals Court Overturns Assault Sentence

A trial is beginning for a 21-year-old Fairbanks man who is charged with second-degree murder in the 2011 death of an acquaintance after an argument.
The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports that Cornelius Everett Jr. pleaded guilty last year to manslaughter and accepted a 15-year prison term for his role in the death of 55-year-old Johnson Griffin at a Fairbanks apartment.
Everett changed his mind eight days later, saying his court-appointed attorney coerced him into pleading guilty.
Superior Court judge Michael MacDonald released him from the plea deal. The judge, however, declined to grant a new court-appointed attorney.
In June 2011, Griffin was found dead in his Northward Building apartment.
Everett was later identified as a suspect.
He was scheduled to begin trial Monday.