The trial date has been set for the man accused of raping and murdering a 7-year-old Kentucky girl two years ago.

Timothy Madden is facing the death penalty. He is charged with kidnapping, rape, sodomy and murder.

In court on Thursday, Judge Janet Crocker decided Madden's trial will begin on Feb. 26.

Crocker called this case "the most horrendous crime in recent history in Allen County."

The judge granted the defense a change of venue, but it's not clear which county Madden will be tried in. The defense will be surveying surrounding counties over the next few months before a location is chosen.

The victim, Gabbi Doolin, was at a football game with her parents in November 2015 when she disappeared. Her body was found 25 minutes later in a creek near Allen County-Scottsville High School.

Kentucky State Police arrested Madden nearly a week later. Madden has maintained his innocence, but investigators say DNA linked him to the death.

Madden's defense attorneys have asked for suppression of the evidence relating to whether Madden gave voluntary consent for police to take DNA swabs and his clothes worn on the night of the murder.

Three KSP deputies testified that Madden gave verbal consent when they showed up at his home the next morning and said he was "calm."

The judge referred to a hour-long recording of the interaction, which she believes proves that Madden gave verbal consent. The judge, along with witnesses, say he can he heard saying "sure" when asked for consent.

Madden's next status hearing will be held in Allen County on Sept. 27.

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