Charges to stand for soldier accused of killing 2

/ Source: The Associated Press

A military judge has refused to dismiss charges against a soldier from New York who is accused of killing two Army officers by detonating a bomb in Iraq.

The ruling Monday means the court-martial of Army National Guard Staff Sgt. Alberto Martinez remains on schedule to start Tuesday with jury selection.

Martinez, of Troy, N.Y., is the first soldier from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to be charged in the killing of his commanding officer.

Martinez, 41, is charged with premeditated murder in the 2005 deaths of 30-year-old Capt. Phillip Esposito of Suffern, N.Y., and 34-year-old 1st Lt. Louis Allen of Milford, Pa.

Prosecutors say there was evidence of bad blood between Martinez and Esposito. Martinez's lawyer has said there is no evidence his client killed the men.