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1040Latest from Somerset Daily American on Mike

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  • axxinjaxxin
    Aug 27, 2007
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      source: http://www.dailyamerican.com/articles/2007/08/23/news/news769.txt

      George attorney files paperwork
      By JUDY D.J. ELLICH
      Daily American Staff Writer
      Tuesday, August 21, 2007 12:35 AM EDT

      Michael Ralph George, the Windber man accused of killing his wife 17
      years ago in Michigan, is being held illegally at the Somerset County
      Jail, according to paperwork filed Monday by his attorney.

      The documents ask that George be taken before a judge immediately for
      an extradition hearing or be released from jail.

      George denies killing his first wife, Barbara George. He refused to
      waive his right to an extradition hearing on Aug. 9 and is being held
      without bail.

      Under Pennsylvania law, George can be committed to jail for up to 90
      days. If an arrest warrant is not issued by the Pennsylvania governor
      within that time, George must be released.

      George, 47, 9th Street, was arrested Aug. 4 on charges of homicide,
      first-degree murder and a firearms violation in the death of his first
      wife.

      According to Michigan police, George shot his wife execution-style
      inside a comic book store they owned together in Macomb County.
      Barbara George died of a single gunshot wound to the head, according
      to a police report.

      George co-owns Comics World comic book store along Graham Avenue with
      his second wife, Renee. George married Renee shortly after his first
      wife's death and moved to Windber less than two years later.

      The couple has resided in Windber for the past 15 years.

      To extradite George, prosecutors will have to prove several elements:
      charges are pending against him in Michigan, he was present in
      Michigan when the crime occurred, he is a fugitive from Michigan,
      paperwork is in order and he is the person charged, District Attorney
      Jerry Spangler said. That information will be presented in the final
      request for an arrest warrant.

      In the writ of habeas corpus, George's Johnstown attorney, Timothy C.
      Leventry, said his client's confinement is unlawful because the
      commonwealth has not presented any evidence to fulfill the
      requirements for extradition.

      Generally, a court only has jurisdiction in the state in which it is
      located, Spangler said. The extradition process, set up under the U.S.
      Constitution, allows an arrest warrant from one state to be recognized
      by another state, he said.

      "An actual extradition proceeding is the challenge to the detention of
      somebody," he said.

      In an extradition process, governors from both states must issue
      arrest warrants. Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell has not yet issued a
      warrant.

      According to Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith, the July 13, 1990,
      killing was the result of an extramarital affair George was having
      with a store employee. George also stood to benefit financially, with
      a six-figure payout on his wife's life insurance policy, he said.

      The case was re-opened by the district attorney's office in a
      collective effort to solve cold cases in Macomb County, northeast of
      Detroit.

      If convicted of murder, George will have no chance for parole.
      Michigan does not have the death penalty.