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Updated Sep 18, 2013 - 2:44 pm

Arizona prosecutors respond to order by Milke case judge

(AP Photo)

PHOENIX -- Maricopa County prosecutors acknowledge they didn't give a judge a letter with information affecting a key witness' availability for the retrial of former death row inmate Debra Milke in the 1989 killing of her young son.

Superior Court Judge Rosa Mroz had ordered prosecutors explain why they didn't promptly give her a letter from Arizona's U.S. attorney.

The letter said a preliminary review indicated that statutes of limitations had expired for prosecution of former detective Armando Saldate, whose credibility has been questioned.

The prosecutors' response to Mroz's order said Saldate's lawyer got the letter but indicated it doesn't sufficiently rule out possible prosecution of his client.

The response also says the prosecutors didn't give the letter to Mroz because there isn't yet a formal resolution acceptable to Saldate's lawyer.

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