The trial gets underway today for a Mason City man who’s accused of raping and murdering a southern Minnesota hotel clerk. 46-year-old Roger Morton faces charges of first-degree murder, first-degree premeditated murder, and criminal sexual conduct in the death of Blue Earth hotel clerk Mary Klatt. Klatt, who is a native of Britt in north-central Iowa, was raped and strangled at the AmericInn in Blue Earth on May 29th of last year. Morton was a guest at the hotel while working for a roofing company who was repairing the United Hospital in Blue Earth. Prosecutors say they’ve linked Morton to the killing through D-N-A and other evidence found at the crime scene, including evidence that he made a telephone call through his long-distance calling card at the front desk where Klatt was working at about 3 AM. He was arrested in Mason City on June 13th.
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