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Closing arguments coming up in murder trial of man accused of killing Kent woman in 2007

Randall Connor enters a not guilty plea to first-degree murder at his arraignment in Kent in 2008. He is accused of killing a Kent woman in 2007. - CHARLES CORTES, Kent Reporter
Randall Connor enters a not guilty plea to first-degree murder at his arraignment in Kent in 2008. He is accused of killing a Kent woman in 2007.
— image credit: CHARLES CORTES, Kent Reporter

Closing arguments are expected either Wednesday, April 13 or Thursday, April 14 at King County Superior Court in Seattle for the man accused of stabbing to death a Kent woman in 2007.

King County prosecutors charged Randall Edward Connor, 31, with first-degree murder for killing Merianne Lorentson, 24, in her East Hill apartment. Lorentson, an aspiring model and a single mother of a then 5-year-old daughter, was found March 9, 2007 stabbed to death in her living room at an apartment in the 10400 block of Kent-Kangley Road. She was stabbed more than 30 times in her head, neck and body, according to the King County Medical Examiner's autopsy report.

Closing arguments are possible this week, according to the King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office. The trial started in late February before Judge Sharon Armstrong at the King County Courthouse in Seattle.

If convicted of first-degree murder, Connor faces a sentencing range of 23 to 28 years in prison. Connor remains in custody at the county jail in Seattle in lieu of $2 million bail.

Connor, who once lived in SeaTac, had dated Lorentson, according to the charging papers.

Kent detectives used DNA test results, cell phone records and interviews with friends and relatives of Connor and Lorentson to build their case against Connor.

Lorentson had told friends that she feared Connor because he had assaulted and threatened her at gunpoint, according to the charging papers. Connor also had reportedly told Lorentson he would kill any man he saw with her. Relatives of Connor told police that Lorentson had broken up with him.

Connor pleaded not guilty to the first-degree murder charge in April 2008. Several defense requests to continue the trial date helped cause the trial to be pushed out nearly three years, said Dan Donohoe, spokesman for the Prosecuting Attorney's Office.

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