Former Cochise County jail chaplain loses bid to move trial

BISBEE, Ariz. (AP) — A former Cochise County jail chaplain has lost his bid to have his upcoming trial on charges accusing him of sexually assaulting female inmates conducted outside the county.

Herald/Review Media reported that Superior Court Judge Laura Cardinal denied the motion but said she would consider sealing online information about the case against Douglas Packer after defense attorney Jacob Amaru said the information could influence potential jurors.

Amaru during a hearing Thursday said Sheriff Mark Dannels' tarnished the case by making statements about Packer being guilty.

Prosecutor Lori Zucco said anything Dannels may have said publicly about the case was long ago.

Dannels said in January following Packer's arrest that Packer "violated his sacred oath of office and took advantage" of those in need.