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Attorneys update judge on Rodriguez death penalty appeal


FARGO (KFGO-AM) - A federal judge says it's too early to tell whether an appeal by a man sentenced to death for killing Dru Sjodin can be decided without a hearing.

Lawyers for Alfonso Rodriguez appeared in federal court to give Judge Ralph Erickson a progress report.

The government is disputing claims that Rodriguez is mentally retarded and that his trial lawyers did a poor job. They say Rodriguez's appeal has no basis and he should be executed.

Dru’s father, Allan Sjodin, says Dru’s family is committed to making sure justice is carried out.

Attorneys have until March to file their next set of arguments.