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Posted on Sat, Apr. 09, 2005

Request for bail dropped in slaying


Mercury News

The attorney for the man accused of killing Jeanine Harms of Los Gatos on Friday withdrew his request for a bail hearing for his client, 41-year-old Maurice Nasmeh. Nasmeh remains in Santa Clara County Jail in San Jose, where he has been housed since his Dec. 16 arrest.

``We feel a bail hearing would be fruitless,'' said San Jose attorney Daniel Jensen outside the courtroom. ``We're real skeptical that a judge in this county would approve it in a case with a pending murder charge.''

Jensen is working with high-profile San Francisco attorney Tony Serra on the case. He said the two discussed the case Thursday and decided not to move forward with the bail hearing.

``It's a win; he is still behind bars,'' Harms' mother, Georgette Sanchez, said after learning there would be no bail hearing.

Two previously scheduled hearings for Nasmeh had been continued at his lawyers' request.

Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Paul R. Bernal set May 6 at 9:30 a.m. for a brief appearance to determine when a preliminary hearing in the case will begin.

Nasmeh, an architect, has pleaded not guilty to killing the 42-year-old Harms. Nasmeh did not appear in court on Friday.

Harms disappeared on July 27, 2001, after a late-night date with Nasmeh, who police say was the last person to see her alive. Her remains have not been found. Police investigators connected Nasmeh to the alleged crime through fibers from a yarn crafts project of Harms' that were found inside the cargo area of Nasmeh's SUV.

Contact Connie Skipitares at cskipitares@mercurynews. com or (408) 920-5647.

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