UPDATED: Cold case murder defendant absent from court Wednesday morning

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Prentice Foreman

Update: Foreman showed up for court Wednesday afternoon. 

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Prentice Foreman, charged in the 1979 killing of a woman in southwest Bakersfield, was not in court for his ongoing murder trial Wednesday morning.

The reason for Foreman’s absence was not publicly disclosed, but Judge Brian M. McNamara told the jury the proceedings will resume at 1:30 p.m. 

The trial is in its third day and testimony is expected from three civilian witnesses.

Foreman, 61, is accused of killing 18-year-old Dawn Koons. Her body, hands bound and a pillowcase covering her head, was found in her apartment’s bathtub.

She’d been asphxiated, and was either strangled or smothered, according to testimony given at a preliminary hearing last year. 

Investigators arrested Foreman in 2017 after retested evidence using new DNA testing technology indicated his semen was at the crime scene. The evidence indicates Foreman left the DNA not long before Koons’ death, prosecutor Gina Pearl has said.

Foreman’s attorney, Dana Kinnison, has told the jury his client had consensual sex with Koons and did not kill her. Koons and Foreman lived at the same apartment complex. 

Foreman faces life in prison if convicted.

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