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May 7, 2014

Purdue slaying suspect tries again to drop lawyer

LAFAYETTE (AP) — A man charged with killing a fellow Purdue University student during a classroom attack is trying again to drop his defense attorney.

Last month, a Tippecanoe County judge rejected 23-year-old Cody Cousins' first request to dismiss his attorney, ruling that a motion filed by his attorney did not meet the criteria for such action.

But attorney Robert Gevers filed a second motion after Tippecanoe Superior Judge Thomas Busch denied the attorney's first motion on April 22, the Journal & Courier reported.

In that second filing, Gevers states that "... Mr. Cousins directly informed counsel that Mr. Cousins no longer desired counsel's representation, and the attorney-client relationship has become irreparably deteriorated as a result of such conversations and encounters."

That criteria fit one of the reasons for counsel to be granted permission to withdraw which Busch cited in his order denying Gevers' first motion to withdraw.

The judge set a Thursday hearing to consider the new motion and hear from Cousins about his effort to drop Gevers' services and instead represent himself in court.

Cousins is charged with murder in the Jan. 21 killing of 21-year-old Andrew Boldt of West Bend, Wis., inside a classroom on the West Lafayette campus.

Prosecutors said Cousins, of Warsaw, shot and stabbed Boldt before fellow students inside Purdue's Electrical Engineering Building.

Police and prosecutors haven't indicated a possible motive for the attack, and court documents have not cited a possible motive for the slaying.

Both Cousins and Boldt were seniors and teaching assistants, but it wasn't clear if or how they knew each other.

Gevers was retained as Cousins' attorney shortly before Cousins' Jan. 23 initial hearing on the murder charge. He also represented Cousins at a March 7 pretrial hearing, during which Cousins' trial date was set as Oct. 6.

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