Thad Allton/Topeka Capital-Journal
James Kahler listens to motions June 16 at the Osage County
Wayne White | Managing Editor
LYNDON—A man accused of killing his wife, two teenage daughters
and his wife’s grandmother in Burlingame will still face
the death penalty if he is convicted of the crimes, after a ruling
by a district court judge last week.
Attorneys for James Kraig Kahler filed a motion June 2 challenging
the constitutionality of the Kansas death penalty, citing the
punishment is applied unequally and discriminatory, the death
penalty is cruel and unusual punishment, and the manner in which
it is carried out is cruel and unusual.
Kahler, 48, is charged with capital murder for the deaths of his
wife, Karen, the couple’s teenage daughters, Emily and Lauren,
and Karen’s grandmother, Dorothy Wight. All were shot in
Wight’s Burlingame home Nov. 28, 2009.
Kahler’s attorneys, Thomas Haney and Amanda Vogelsburg,
asserted in the motion the Kansas death penalty is applied “overwhelmingly
to defendants who have been convicted of killing Caucasian women.”
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