The re-sentencing for a man convicted of a 2008 murder in Leavenworth has been continued until May.

The re-sentencing for a man convicted of a 2008 murder in Leavenworth has been continued until May.

The re-sentencing for Matthew Astorga had been scheduled for Jan. 22 in Leavenworth County District Court. But it has been rescheduled for May 14.

Astorga, 40, is waiting to be re-sentenced for the first-degree murder of Ruben Rodriguez.

Astorga was convicted of the murder in 2009 and received what is known as a Hard 50 sentence. This means he received a life sentence without possibility of parole for at least 50 years.

But he now has to be re-sentenced because the state’s old Hard 50 law was struck down by a U.S. Supreme Court decision.

Under a new law, a jury will decide whether Astorga should once again receive the Hard 50 sentence.

Astorga is being represented in the case by KiAnn Caprice.

Astorga and Caprice appeared Wednesday in Leavenworth County District Court.

Caprice had filed a motion asking for a continuance of the re-sentencing procedure, which court officials refer to as a trial.

County Attorney Todd Thompson did not object to a continuance, noting that Caprice had only recently been appointed to the case.

“I know it's been going on for a long time,” he said of the case.

But Thompson said he would rather for Caprice to have time to prepare than rush the case.

District Judge Gunnar Sundby said there are complexities in the case and he understands the need for adequate time to prepare. He granted the continuance.

Sundby said he will reserve two days for the jury proceeding. He asked Caprice to notify him if she believes the proceeding will take longer than two days.

Astorga has another case pending in Leavenworth County District Court. In the other case, he is charged with battery on a corrections officer. The crime is alleged to have occurred July 15, 2014, at the Leavenworth County Jail.

A trial in the battery case also had been scheduled for Jan. 22 as a backup to the re-sentencing.

Astorga is being represented in the battery case by Geoffrey Sonntag.

Sonntag argued Wednesday that it made sense for Caprice to represent Astorga in both cases.

“It would have been nice to know in advance because I was prepared for trial,” Astorga said.

Astorga said he wants the matter to be resolved as promptly as possible.

Sonntag said he can be ready for a trial in the case on Jan. 22.

Sundby suggested that Sonntag meet in private with Astorga for about 30 minutes to discuss if they will be ready for trial Jan. 22.

The judge recessed the hearing to give Sonntag time to visit with his client.

When Sonntag returned, the attorney said he and his client had “discussed some new matters and new avenues.”

Sonntag suggested having another hearing Friday. He said this will give him time to determine whether he can go forward with the trial Jan. 22.

Sundby scheduled another hearing for Friday morning.

Twitter: @LVTNewsJohnR