THIBODAUX, Louisiana — The trial for a man accused in the 2012 stabbing deaths of a Lockport woman and her two young daughters has been delayed.
David Brown, 36, of Houma, is charged with three counts of first-degree murder for allegedly stabbing Jacquelin Nieves, 29, and her daughters, 7-year-old Gabriela and 20-month-old Izabela, on Nov. 4, 2012, in their apartment.
The Courier reports (http://bit.ly/1l8q0Hp ) prosecutors are seeking the death penalty.
Brown was originally scheduled to stand trial Sept. 29, but that date has been moved to April 20.
Lafourche Parish District Attorney Cam Morvant II said Brown is on his second set of attorneys, and the trial was pushed back because the defense requested more time to work on the case.
New Orleans-based attorney Kerry Cuccia and his Capital Defense Project of Southeast Louisiana team are representing Brown. They took over the case in late November.
"Every time a trial is set, we treat it as a date we need to prepare for," Cuccia said. "When it became obvious that the September date was not going to work, we went back to the court."
Cuccia said Brown's case will involve a large amount of evidence, from DNA to crime scene reconstruction.
"The approximately nine months that we've had to prepare were simply not enough for a case of this stature," he said.
Cuccia said the money for expert witnesses in the case comes from the state Public Defenders Office, which allots $600,000 annually for expert witnesses in cases throughout Louisiana. The experts are not allowed to work until money is approved for a case.
The Nieveses' bodies were found at their apartment during a fire, which Lafourche Parish deputies said was set to cover up the killings. Detectives believe Brown also sexually assaulted Jacquelin and Gabriela.
Brown denies involvement and has pleaded not guilty.
Information from: The Courier, http://www.houmatoday.com