Sentencing reset for Travis Standlee

Standlee faces up to 50 years in prison for death of Raymond Ursino

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CEDAR RAPIDS — A sentencing date for Travis Standlee, convicted in June of killing a homeless man last year, has been reset to Sept. 23 in Linn County District Court.

Standlee, 44, originally charged with first-degree murder, was convicted of second-degree murder by a jury on June 7. Testimony showed he killed Raymond Ursino, 56, on Sept. 5 in the parking lot at First Presbyterian Church, 310 Fifth St. SE in downtown Cedar Rapids.

Standlee faces up to 50 years in prison. He must serve at least 35 years or 70 percent of the sentence before being eligible for parole.

According to testimony, Standlee, who was also homeless, got into a fight with Ursino in the early morning hours and Standlee strangled him.

Standlee, during an interview, told investigators that he didn’t know Ursino and didn’t remember getting into a fight with him. Standlee didn’t testify during the trial.

Ursino died from manual or hand strangulation, according to a medical examiner who testified during the trial.

Standlee also faces a first-degree murder charge in the strangulation death of Sharon Mead, 41, whose body was found Sept. 11 near Coe College. That trial is set for Oct. 24 and has been moved out of district to Scott County District Court.

According to a criminal complaint, Ursino and Mead both were strangled and had “strikingly similar injuries.” Police found fingerprints on a can near Mead’s body. Standlee was arrested Sept. 22 at a homeless shelter in Des Moines and charged in both deaths.

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