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Convicted killer intends to appeal life sentence

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HELENA – A Lake County man convicted of killing his cousin at a Hot Springs resort in 2013 intends to appeal his sentence. 

Last week the Montana Supreme Court gave attorneys for 30-year-old Melvin Madplume, Jr. an extension of time until Dec. 29 to file an opening brief in the appeal. Attorneys originally gave notice of the appeal in September. The opening brief will explain what grounds Madplume’s appeal is based on. 

Madplume was convicted on April 8 and sentenced to life in prison for the death of his cousin, Laurence Kenmille. 

District Judge John Larson called Madplume’s actions “horrendous and calculated” at a sentencing in April. 

Prosecutors laid out a chilling set of evidence against Madplume at trial, showing that Madplume, Kenmille and a youth had stopped at Wild Horse Hot Springs on May 25, 2013, to soak in a tub, where Kenmille died. Authorities had no leads in the case until October 2013, when another victim came forward in the case saying that Madplume had lured them to the same venue not long before Kenmille’s death and became violent when the man rebuffed Madplume’s unwanted sexual advances. 

The behavior matched the set of forensic evidence surrounding Kenmille’s death. Medical experts testified that Kenmille died of homicidal violence and also said there was evidence of sexual assault. 

Madplume did not testify at trial to defend himself. He is currently housed at the Montana State Prison in Deer Lodge. He is being represented by the public defender’s office. 


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