Murder trial of former elementary school principal may not begin anytime soon

Crime Watch

Leslie Chance stands next to her attorney, Tony Lidgett. File image.

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — The murder trial of Leslie Chance, a former elementary school principal accused of gunning down her husband six years ago, appears unlikely to begin soon as her attorney has at least one other case going to trial before her.

Additionally, defense attorney Tony Lidgett said in court Monday he has requested but not yet received a disc containing information from the crime lab regarding the case.

Prosecutor Art Norris said he can get that information in a couple days, and Superior Court Judge Judith K. Dulcich scheduled a hearing Thursday where it’s likely new readiness and trial dates will be scheduled. The trial is expected to last four months.

Chance’s first trial ended in a mistrial in June when the Public Defender’s office declared a conflict of interest in representing her. Lidgett is representing her through the county’s Indigent Defense Program.

The 52-year-old faces life without the possibility of parole if found guilty of first-degree murder in the death of Todd Chance. His body was found Aug. 25, 2013, off a dirt section of Noriega Road near Enos Lane, shot twice in the chest and once in the palm of his right hand.

Chance stood to receive $250,000 from her husband’s life insurance policies, according to court documents. It’s alleged she learned about criminal investigative techniques and tried to cover her tracks through information she gained after attending a “CSI” exhibit in Las Vegas about two months before the killing.

Leslie Chance was principal of Fairview Elementary School at the time of the killing.

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