By Joshua Scheer, reporter, county10.com
(Lander, Wyo.) – Laziur Hanway Jr., one of the five charged in the 2011 Hudson double homicide, pleaded guilty this afternoon in exchange for life imprisonment.
Originally, suppression of evidence and change of venue hearings were scheduled for Thursday afternoon, but they was changed to a change of plea hearing with regard to an agreement recently filed with the court.
Ninth District Court Judge Norman E. Young advised and reiterated to Hanway that he did not have to alter his plea. “To say this is a big and major decision in your life is the biggest understatement I’ve made in a long time,” he said.
Hanway originally faced four counts of first degree murder, two counts of conspiracy to commit first degree murder, two counts of aggravated robbery, two counts of conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery, and arson. The charges stem from the November 2011 murders of Eric Likes, 42, and Elva Quiver, 20. The pair were killed in their Hudson trailer home allegedly during the perpetration of a robbery. Hanway and other co-defendants allegedly returned to the scene two days later and burnt the home down to destroy evidence.
Per the agreement, Hanway pleaded guilty to two counts of second degree murder in exchange for life imprisonment. To fulfill his plea, Hanway had to give testimony regarding the murders. He did so through questioning by his attorney Dave Sorenson.
Born in 1992, Hanway said he is 20 years old, has some college under his belt and is not married nor does he have children.
He told the court that leading up to the events of Nov. 15, 2011, his sister Samantha Hanway and her husband Joseph Jude Jenkins approached him about robbing Likes because the couple was threatened with eviction. Laziur Hanway said he had met Likes before and had seen Quiver, though he didn’t know her. He said the couple selected Likes because they had seen him with a bunch of cash the week before. On the night of the robbery and murders, Laziur Hanway said Samantha Hanway drove them to the home from Riverton in a stolen pickup truck along with Jude Blackburn.
Laziur Hanway said he had a pocket knife with him, which had a three- to four-inch knife.
He said he and Jenkins were in the house, and after Likes and Quiver went to bed Blackburn joined them. “Joey and Jude told me to take the lead in starting stabbing them,” he said. Laziur Hanway said he and Jenkins entered the bedroom and Blackburn stayed in the doorway. He said Jenkins had a kitchen knife and started attacking Likes first after he woke up. “I went ahead and stabbed Elva,” he said.
Laziur Hanway said he stabbed her multiple times. He said Likes knocked Jenkins down, and then Like came after Laziur Hanway. They wrestled into the hallway, he said, while the stabbing continued. In the hallway, Laziur Hanway said Blackburn hit Likes multiple times with a “2 by 4 or a board.”
Afterwards, Laziur Hanway said the group took items from the home. In all they were there for a couple hours, he testified.
Two days later, Laziur Hanway said he assisted in soaking the home in gasoline and lighting it on fire.
The court and Fremont County Deputy Attorney Pat LeBrun accepted his account as providing the factual basis for the plea. Young accepted the plea and said the formal sentencing will be held within 30 days.
Jenkins, Samantha Hanway and Ryan Hanway have all pleaded guilty in the case. Their formal sentencings have not taken place yet. Ryan Hanway was involved in planning the robbery. Blackburn’s case in under review by the Wyoming Supreme Court. He was 15 at the time of the crimes.