Greenville, MO (KSDK) - The murder trial for 45 year old Marvin Rice of Salem has been postponed after the State notified Rice's attorneys they would be seeking the death penalty against the former Dent County Sheriff's Deputy.
Trial was slated to begin this morning.
Rice is charged with two counts of first degree murder for the December 2011 slayings of 32 year old Annette Durham and 39 year old Steven Strothcamp at their Salem home. Authorities have cited a child custody dispute as the motive behind Rice's crimes.
Investigators say Rice shot and killed his former girlfriend and her boyfriend after a dispute involving Rice's toddler son.
After leaving the crime scene, police say Rice fled to Jefferson City engaging police in a gun battle through rural Missouri before arriving at the crowded Capitol Plaza Hotel where Rice was shot by officers. No guests or law enforcement officials were injured in the shoot out.
A youth hockey team from Granite City, Illinois was staying at the hotel while participating in a tournament the night Rice opened fire inside the Capitol Plaza.
Rice's case was moved to Wayne County on a change of venue from Dent County. A decision on a new trial date is scheduled to be made December 4th.