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Mississippi man to appeal manslaughter conviction...

The Republic: Mississippi man to appeal manslaughter conviction in death of Dutch bicyclist

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
November 15, 2011

JACKSON, Miss. — A Mississippi man will get a new attorney to handle his appeal of his conviction in the death of Dutch cyclist Esther Hageman on the Natchez Trace in Chickasaw County.

The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal reports (http://bit.ly/vDdYof) that U.S. Magistrate David Sanders on Monday granted Wendell Blount permission to secure a federal public defender for his appeal. Blount's previous attorney was released.

In 2010, Blount was sentenced to 10 years in prison for vehicular manslaughter in the 2009 death of Hageman.

Federal prosecutors say Blount was high on morphine when his vehicle struck and killed Hageman, of Leiden, Netherlands. Hageman was a veteran journalist for one of the Netherlands' major newspapers, Trouw.

The Natchez Trace is part of the National Parks system so Hageman's death was prosecuted in federal court.