CANYON CITY – For the second time in three months, delays at the state crime lab have postponed a plea hearing in a Prairie City child sex abuse case.

Don Curtis Davis was scheduled to enter a plea in the case last Friday, Feb. 15, in Grant County Circuit Court.

He faces three counts of first-degree sex abuse, three counts of third-degree sex abuse, three counts of attempted sodomy, and one count of unlawful possession of oxycontin. The indictment in the case alleged incidents involving a child under the age of 18.

Davis’ plea hearing had to be reset last November because attorneys on both sides were awaiting results of DNA testing from the state crime lab.

District Attorney Ryan Joslin said he had asked the crime lab to expedite the tests, and officials there told him they understood the need to get the job done.

However, Joslin said that when he talked with the lab again last week, they still hadn’t done anything with the evidence.

The testing needed usually takes six weeks, and crime lab officials now say they can put a rush on the job and get it done in four weeks.

Defense attorney John Lamborn called the lab’s delay “amazing,” but said he understood it was not the district attorney’s fault.

“I assume everyone’s frustrated by this,” Cramer said.

He said we are seeing the result of closures of crime labs, cuts in funding, and budget choices made by legislators. It’s not good for victims or defendants, or the families, he noted.

Lamborn said negotiations continue and he’s optimistic that the case could be settled before trial.

Cramer set a new plea hearing for March 28. The trial is set for May 14-16.

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