Casey Eaton was shot to death in April, just a block from the Kansas City, Kan., park dedicated to her murdered 10-year-old sister.
On Friday, the man accused of killing Eaton was ordered to stand trial on a charge of second-degree murder.
Enemencio Lansdown, 41, allegedly shot Eaton in the 900 block of Kansas Avenue on April 19.
He told witnesses she had shot herself, but left the area before police arrived, according to preliminary hearing testimony Friday in Wyandotte County District Court.
Eaton and Lansdown had dated for a short time, and according to testimony, he was angry because he thought she was seeing other men.
On the night she was killed, a friend gave Lansdown a ride to the restaurant where she worked.
The friend said that Lansdown was angry. Lansdown and Eaton left in one vehicle and the friend followed. He said it appeared they were having a physical fight in the car as they drove.
Shortly after arriving back at the house on Kansas Avenue, Lansdown told the friend she had shot herself.
However, Assistant District Attorney Jennifer Tatum introduced the autopsy report, which classified the death as a homicide. The report noted injuries on Eaton’s face and arms that had not been present earlier in the day.
A judge ruled that the evidence was enough for the case to proceed to trial.
Lansdown’s attorney entered ‘not guilty’ pleas on his behalf, and the case was set for an August 11 scheduling conference.
The house where Eaton was killed is down the street from the playground in a park that’s dedicated to Pamela Butler, Eaton’s sister, who was kidnapped and killed in 1999.