BLOUNTVILLE - State prosecutors won't ask for the death penalty if a Kingsport man is convicted of bludgeoning a man and his girlfriend to death so he could steal their drugs, according to a notice filed in Sullivan County Circuit Court.
Michael Fields, 37, appeared briefly before Criminal Court Judge Rob Montgomery Friday to hear the state's decision.
Deputy District Attorney General Barry Staubus said the state will seek life without the possibility of parole if Fields is convicted of the June 2006 deaths of Glen H. Thacker, 26, and Asiah L. Foster-Walton, 20, inside their Kingsport apartment on Arbor Place.
Kingsport Police Department investigators said Fields told them that he went to see Thacker to obtain drugs.
Instead, detectives believe Fields killed the two with a baseball bat and then stole drugs from the apartment.
Fields goes to trial for the killings July 9.
He also faces charges in a third murder, one that occurred more than a year before Thacker and Foster-Walton died.
Fields is accused of killing Karen Nuckles on Oct. 26, 2004, inside her rented room at the Ballis Tourist Home on West Sullivan Street.
Two men who ran the inn were also beaten and injured during the break-in.
Montgomery is not the judge in that case because he was still an assistant district attorney general when Nuckles died.
Criminal Court Judge Bob Cupp from the First Judicial District is currently trying the case, but Montgomery said Cupp wrote him a letter stating that he may have to step out of the case.
Fields will appear in that case again in March.
The state is not seeking life without parole if Fields is convicted of Nuckles' death, Staubus said.
If he is convicted, Fields would face life in prison.
Fields is currently jailed on a $750,000 bond.