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Judge denies move of Presgraves trial

HARRISONBURG -- A U.S. District Court judge has denied the government's motion to move Page County Sheriff Daniel W. "Danny" Presgraves' trial to Roanoke.

Presgraves, who faces numerous corruption charges, has fought against a change of venue.

The government had said pre-trial publicity could taint the jury pool. The defense argued that the government courted that publicity, and that getting witnesses from Rockingham and Page counties to Roanoke would cost more.

In an order issued Tuesday, Judge Glen E. Conrad says that "some effort must first be made to select a jury from the general area in which the criminal conduct is said to have occurred."

Additionally, Conrad ruled that a jury panel from the Harrisonburg Division would be summoned for the first day of the trial, and if a jury can't be seated that day, a jury panel would be summoned from the Charlottesville Division for the second day, according to the order.

Conrad also agreed to give Presgraves some more time to prepare for trial, delaying its start by one week, to March 23, according to online court records.

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