FARMINGTON — Preliminary hearing dates of March 27-29 have been set for accused murderer Nathanael Sloop.
Sloop, 33, was in 2nd District Court Tuesday afternoon for the brief hearing in which the preliminary hearing date and a March 18 exhibit date were set.
Nathanael and his wife Stephanie Sloop are charged with murder in the May 2010 death of Stephanie Sloop's son, 4-year-old Ethan Stacy. His body was found May 8, 2010 near Powder Mountain in Weber County. The Davis County Attorney's Office filed a notice of intent last week that they would be seeking the death penalty.
Outside the courtroom, several women who attend most of Sloop's hearings met with reporters to share a message they received from Joe Stacy, Ethan's father who lives in Virginia.
Anissa Martinez, of Roy, said the women have become friends of the Stacy family. She read the statement to reporters. It said, in part, that the Stacy family is not satisfied with the death penalty, "but if that's as much as we can get, it will have to do."
The family is putting their trust in the justice system and in God, according to the statement.
Sloop's attorney Rich Mauro told reporters that there have been discussions with the prosecution concerning a possible plea deal, but at this point there is no deal. "If we reach an agreement, we reach an agreement. If not we move forward,” Mauro said. “There's always discussions on how things might go, what might happen."