Double murder suspect moved

Eldon Samuel now at juvenile detention center

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COEUR d'ALENE - A teen being held on charges of murdering his father and brother last March was moved this week from the Kootenai County jail to the juvenile detention center.

Eldon Gale Samuel III, 14, who is being tried as an adult on first- and second-degree murder charges, spent the first two months of his incarceration in the adult facility. He was briefly housed at the juvenile detention center before a judge's decision July 2 sent him back to the jail.

The most recent move comes after a Tuesday ruling by Kootenai County District Court Judge Lansing Haynes. The ruling stipulates that Samuel will be held at the juvenile facility throughout the trial.

While Samuel was at the county jail, he was housed in a medical holding cell and segregated from contact with any other inmate due to his age.

These conditions caught the attention of the American Civil Liberties Union of Idaho. The organization filed a motion to have Samuel brought back to the juvenile center.

"...the ACLU believes it is important that this Court carefully examine the conditions that Eldon G. Samuel III, is currently suffering at the adult jail in Kootenai County and issue a writ of habeas corpus to end any unconstitutional or unlawful conditions it discovers," Leo Morales, interim Director of the ACLU, wrote in an affidavit.

"The ACLU also believes that it is imperative for this Court to ensure that the judiciary is never responsible for the inhumane or unconstitutional confinement of children, especially against the better judgment of jail, corrections, and juvenile detention center officials."

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