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Avila returns for prosecution in double homicide

Daniel Avila

KINGMAN – The suspect in a near two-year-old double homicide outside Kingman faces a May 16 initial court appearance before Judge Doug Camacho at the Mohave County Law and Justice Center.

Daniel Matthew Avila, 26, El Mirage, is charged with two counts of first-degree murder for the June 27, 2022 shooting deaths of Retta Atkins, 73, and her husband Darren VanHouten, 50. Authorities allege a video surveillance system reveals Avila outside before breaking in and shooting the couple to death in their home in the 9200 block of Dilligaf Road.

Avila previously pleaded guilty in a Tempe burglary case and was given a 2.5-year prison sentence. He was recently extradited back to Kingman to stand trial in Mohave County.

Deputy Mohave County Attorney Jacob Cote is the prosecutor assigned to the case. Cote said Avila will be assigned legal counsel after the initial court appearance if he does not secure private counsel himself.

Dave Hawkins

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