The suspect in the murder of Realtor Sidney Cranston Jr., 40, pleaded not guilty in Mohave County Superior Court to new felony charges of concealment of a dead body and tampering with evidence, according to an article in the Daily Miner.
Back in January, Arizona police arrested Al Blanco, 61, charging him with murder in the death of Cranston.
On Tuesday, after nearly 18 months, authorities believed they discovered the remains of Cranston, who went missing while showing a property.
At the time in January, the Daily Miner reported, “Police zeroed in on Al Blanco, a friend who owed money to Cranston, as a person of interest. Blanco managed Cranston’s rental properties and had collected about $1,600 the day Cranston went missing.”
Here’s the latest update on the case from the article:
Blanco, who was arrested Jan. 11, is already being held without bond on the first-degree murder charge to which he pleaded not guilty at a Jan. 26 arraignment. Conn set a case management conference for 10 a.m. March 20.
Codefendant Bill Sanders, indicted as an accomplice to the murder, also pleaded not guilty before Judge Conn Monday morning to charges of concealment of a dead body and tampering with evidence.
The Mohave County Attorney’s Office has not yet determined if it will seek the death penalty in the case. Other options are life in prison and life with the possibility of parole if the state seeks a conviction for felony murder, and not premeditated murder.
Cranston was last seen on June 16 when he reportedly went to show an unknown property to an unknown client near Kingman, Arizona, about 100 miles southeast of Las Vegas.
Cranston was last seen at noon by a friend he had lunch with, and according to local media and police reports, his last phone call was logged at 1:30 p.m.
After a week, although local law enforcement officials were actively searching, family and friends feared the trail was already going cold.
By August 2015, Cranston's family said they were giving up hope of finding him alive.
The last news before Arizona authorities discovered the remains of Cranston in January 2017 came a year after he went missing in June 2016, with Chris Cranston, Sidney Cranston’s brother, urging anyone with information, even those possibly responsible, to come forward.