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Two suspects in 2021 La Crosse triple homicide quarry shooting make separate court appearances



Could a DNA sample from a La Crosse County murder suspect connect him to a gun found close to the crime scene?


Circuit Court Judge Elliott Levine gave the state permission Wednesday to obtain a genetic sample from Nya Thao, one of two men accused of killing three others in 2021 at a quarry near West Salem.

La Crosse County District Attorney Tim Gruenke said the gun in question was discovered near the quarry just last month.

Thao’s attorney, Aaron Nelson, questioned in court whether DNA evidence would help the state prove its case.

Thao will be tried in June.


The other suspect, Khamthaneth Rattanasack, was scheduled to reach a plea agreement Wednesday, but that hearing is being postponed until after the Thao trial.

Gruenke said there are more details to work out on a plea for Rattansack.

Both men face three homicide counts for the shooting deaths of Nemo Yang, Peng Lor and Trevor Maloney.

Authorities claim the reasoning for the murders was over $600 owed to Rattanasack by one of the victims.

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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