Three-week trial scheduled for Thomas Lee Johnson |

Three-week trial scheduled for Thomas Lee Johnson

Matt Stensland
Thomas Lee Johnson

— Thomas Lee Johnson has pleaded not guilty again to the May 2000 murder of Lori Bases.

Johnson appeared in court Friday at the Routt County Justice Center. Fourteenth Judicial District Chief Judge Michael O’Hara scheduled a three-week trial to begin Dec. 28.

The court has not decided whether the Johnson trial will actually take place in Routt County. Johnson’s first two trials took place in Fort Collins after a request for change of venue. Johnson has been granted two new trials by the Colorado Court of Appeals.

After Johnson was sentenced to life in January 2002, the Colorado Court of Appeals ruled in 2006 that the jury was given faulty instructions and overturned the conviction.

Earlier this year, Johnson won another appeal related to his 2009 retrial.

The Colorado Court of Appeals agreed Johnson was denied his Sixth Amendment Constitutional right to defend himself. They ordered Johnson be given a new trial.

Johnson is charged with first-degree murder, trespassing and criminal mischief.

Prosecutors have argued Johnson stabbed Bases more than 20 times. Authorities believed he killed the 31-year-old Steamboat Springs woman because he thought she was interfering with his relationship with Kim Goodwin, a good friend of Bases.

Johnson claimed he killed Bases in self-defense.

To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247, email or follow him on Twitter @SBTStensland

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