August court date set for Susan Van Note after mistrial in murder case (KS)

A Lee’s Summit lawyer now will go on trial Aug. 17 in the slayings of her millionaire father and his longtime girlfriend.

Last week, when Susan Van Note was supposed to stand trial in Laclede County Circuit Court in Lebanon, Mo., a judge declared a mistrial before a jury was seated. Judge Kenneth Hayden said prospective jurors had been discussing the case during breaks.

Hayden said that because of scheduling conflicts, the trial might not be held until 2017. Prosecutors said they would push for an earlier date.

A court spokesperson said Monday that Hayden had managed to secure a courtroom for the 12-day trial.

Van Note, a Lee’s Summit lawyer, is accused of murdering her millionaire father and his girlfriend on Oct. 2, 2010, at the Lake of the Ozarks.

The girlfriend, Sharon Dickson, 59, died at the scene. William Van Note, 67, was taken to a hospital in Columbia, where he died four days later after his daughter showed up with a durable power of attorney for health care with his signature at the bottom.

Prosecutors say Susan Van Note forged the document and that she went to her father’s Sunrise Beach, Mo., house to kill the couple because she wanted his money. She was executor of his will, but it named Dickson as the prime beneficiary.

In her work as a lawyer, Susan Van Note specialized in end-of life matters.


August court date set for Susan Van Note after mistrial in murder case
Donald Bradley
June 15, 2015
The Kansas City Star

Additional coverage:

Will accused killer inherit victim’s fortune?
June 22, 2015
Kansas City Business Journal

A jury will decide if a Lee’s Summit lawyer is guilty of killing of her father and his girlfriend even as a probate case determines if she’s able to inherit his millions, The Kansas City Star reports.

Susan Van Note is accused of murder in the shooting deaths of her father and his girlfriend. While defending herself in the criminal case, Van Note also is fighting to inherit her father’s multimillion-dollar estate.

Complicating the probate case is the fact that William Van Note left his estate to his girlfriend. Since she died before him, Susan Van Note contends that she should inherit the money.

The girlfriend’s son, meanwhile, is asking the court to extend a legal rule that prevents a murderer from inheriting money from her victim.