Ronnie Kato, accused of killing police officer and acquaintance during April crime spree, pleads 'not guilty'
BATON ROUGE - Ronnie Kato, a 36-year-old man accused of engaging in an April 26 crime spree that involved taking the life of his girlfriend's step-father, Curtis Richardson, before shooting and killing Baton Rouge Police Lt. Glenn Hutto Jr. and then wounding Cpl. Derrick Maglone, faced Judge Richard Anderson Friday morning for his arraignment.
Kato, attending the virtual court appearance with his attorney's Lena Hinton and Sean Collins, entered a 'not guilty' plea to two counts of first degree murder and one count of attempted murder.
Ronnie Kato, the man accused of killing his girlfriend's step-father, before shooting and killing a Baton Rouge Police officer then wounding another was in court today. Kato entered a not guilty plea for two counts of first degree murder. @WBRZ. https://t.co/mnTS4afIyw— Nadeen Abusada (@NadeenAbusada) October 23, 2020
It's been nearly six months since he was accused of taking the lives of Lt. Hutto and Richardson, and Kato's appearance has changed to that of man who's spent a significant amount of time behind bars.
With long hair, a full beard, and noticeably slimmer than he appeared in his April mugshot, Kato faced Judge Anderson with his 'not guilty' plea early Friday morning.
The 36-year-old was indicted in July, and at that time East Baton Rouge Parish District Attorney Hillar Moore III said his office intends to continue meeting with the victims' families so that a formal decision on whether to seek the death penalty will be made in the near future.
His next status hearing is January 21, 2020.
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