A trial has been continued for a man who is awaiting resentencing for a 2008 murder in Leavenworth, court records show.

A trial has been continued for a man who is awaiting resentencing for a 2008 murder in Leavenworth, court records show.

The trial for Matthew Astorga had been scheduled for Feb. 12 in Leavenworth County District Court. But the trial has been continued until May 19, according to court records.

The trial is scheduled as part of Astorga's sentencing. Jurors will not be asked to reach a decision about Astorga's guilt or innocence. Instead, they will be asked whether a sentence known as the Hard 50 should be imposed.

A Hard 50 sentence means the defendant would not be eligible for parole for at least 50 years.

Astorga, 42, was convicted in 2009 of the first-degree murder of Ruben Rodriguez. The crime occurred Dec. 26, 2008, in Leavenworth.

A Hard 50 sentence previously was imposed in the case.

Astorga's conviction still stands. But he has to be resentenced because the state’s old Hard 50 law was struck down following a U.S. Supreme Court decision.

Prosecutors are seeking to resentence Astorga under the state’s new Hard 50 law which requires a jury be convened for the sentencing.

The sentencing trial was rescheduled during a hearing last week. County Attorney Todd Thompson said the continuance was requested by the defense.

Astorga remains in custody at the Leavenworth County Jail.

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