Arizona court taking up escaped inmate's appeal

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John McCluskey By Catherine Holland John McCluskey By Catherine Holland

PHOENIX (AP) -- The state Court of Appeals is set Tuesday to take up the case of an Arizona inmate convicted of breaking out of prison and abducting two truck drivers.

John McCluskey is seeking to have his convictions on escape, kidnapping, aggravated assault and other charges overturned. He was among three inmates who fled a medium-security prison near Kingman in 2010.

The appellate court will consider whether a Mohave County Superior Court judge abused his discretion in denying McCluskey's motion to strike four jurors, which his attorneys say resulted in prejudice.

It also is considering whether the lower court violated a prohibition against double punishment by imposing consecutive terms for weapons misconduct.

The three-judge panel isn't expected to rule immediately.

McCluskey also faces federal charges in the deaths of an Oklahoma couple in New Mexico.