Judge recuses himself in Vanecko case - FOX 35 News Orlando

Judge recuses himself in Vanecko case

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

The Richard Vanecko manslaughter case was already unusual because it involved a special prosecutor, but now, it becomes even more unusual, as the prosecutors ask for, and receive, a judge from outside of Cook County.

EXCLUSIVE: Vanecko defense satisfied with Judge Hill for case

Richard Vanecko's attorneys spoke out on Vanecko's behalf Monday for the first time since Vanecko was indicted two weeks ago.

"The state's witnesses in this case are liars, that will be shown, and when the facts are known, it will be a not guilty," says defense attorney Marc Martin.

Vanecko allegedly punched David Koschman back in 2004. The 21-year-old Koschman died 11 days later. It was eight years before Vanecko was charged.

Investigators are still examining whether family connections helped him avoid prosecution.

Now, Judge Arthur Hill Junior--who once worked for then-state's attorney Richard Daley--withdrew from the case, saying he could have been fair, but wanted to act with an abundance of caution.

"I think Judge Hill came to the conclusion, as fair as he could have been, the public didn't get that impression and I think he's catering to the need of the public to know that it's an unbiased decision," says Kent College of Law professor Richard Kling.

Judge Michael Toomin then granted a prosecution request that a judge from outside Cook County try this case. Judge Toomin said he trusted Cook County's judges, but concerns over their connections could be a distraction. Defense attorneys opposed his decision.

"They can bring in a judge from Kalamazoon for all I care, we expect to get a fair trial, but we think a Cook County judge can handle this case," says Martin.

Now, it's the Illinois Supreme Court which will select a judge. It's likely the trial will still be held in Chicago.

 

 

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