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Marti murder suspect asks for new lawyer 

The 36-year-old man charged with the murder of 26-year-old Kristen Marti appears to be dissatisfied with his current attorney.

Robert William Koehler IV, who is facing a felony charge of murder in connection with Marti's January 2018 death, filed a motion from SLO County Jail on Jan. 12 asking the judge in his case to dismiss and replace his current attorney.

According to court records, Koehler's current lawyer is Trace Milan. Milan, a SLO-based criminal defense attorney, was appointed by the court to represent Koehler after the SLO County Public Defender's Office, as well as several other local defense attorneys, declared they had conflicts in the case and could not represent him.

In a hand-written comment in the motion, Koehler claimed that his attorney failed to submit a letter of preservation for a toxicology sample before a specified time limit, leading to "the destruction of evidence."

Milan appears to be actively working to defend his client against the charges. At an October 2018 preliminary hearing, Milan cross-examined multiple police investigators about the evidence they'd gathered in the case. He also filed multiple motions with the court, including ones that asked for video footage associated the case.

As of Feb. 6, court records indicated that the judge in the case has not made a ruling on Koehler's request, and Milan is still listed as his attorney for a pre-trial conference scheduled for Feb. 11.

Koehler, a mechanic from Arroyo Grande, was arrested in May 2018 in Minneapolis and extradited to SLO County, where he was charged with Marti's murder. Marti was reported missing on Jan. 18, 2018, and was last seen on Jan. 9, 2018, according to SLO police. Her body was found in Prefumo Canyon on March 25 after a search operation by local law enforcement agencies.

Koehler has pleaded not guilty to the murder charge. Δ

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