Attorneys for Woodrow Karey say he's spent too long in jail awaiting trial and that it's only fair he be released.
Karey's attorneys admit he shot and killed Pastor Ronald Harris in church before his congregation, but they deny he committed a crime.
The state and the defense have been at odds over two trips to the grand jury. The first trip resulted in a manslaughter charge and the second resulted in a second-degree murder charge. At the end of last month, the state Supreme Court threw out a second-degree murder indictment against Karey, although the district attorney has asked for a rehearing.
A motion filed today by defense attorney Adam Johnson says Karey's right to a speedy trial has been violated and he should be set free.
A hearing is set for August 24.
Louisiana law states that a defendant must be brought to trial within 120 days if incarcerated. However, if the state can prove just cause, the trial can be delayed. It can also be delayed if a defense motion for a continuance is granted.
Johnson says that the defense is ready to go to trial and that keeping Karey in jail is "unjust."