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Associated Press, Published April 13 2010

Man pleads not guilty in ND killing

ASHLEY, N.D. — A Bismarck man has pleaded not guilty to murder in the death of a Wishek man.

Twenty-seven-year-old Nicholas Caspers is charged in the Feb. 28 death of 30-year-old Paul Varner. He entered his plea Tuesday.

Varner originally was from Pierz, Minn., and was working at Wishek Livestock Sales, which is owned by his father, Joe.

Caspers is an auctioneer with South Dakota-based Mobridge Livestock Market. He was the 2008 South Dakota Auctioneers Association bid calling champion.

Authorities say Varner was pronounced dead at the Wishek hospital after a fight with Caspers. An attorney for Caspers has said his client acted in self-defense.

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