Sunday, February 1, 2009

Sheley Decides to Keep His Lawyers After All

Guest Entry by katfish!

The title of this entry accurately sums up the outcome of the case management hearing that I attended today at the Knox County Courthouse in Galesburg, IL. for the murder case of accused spree killer Nicholas Sheley. However, it only describes the final 10-15 minutes of the approximately 90 minute hearing. Never the less, for the sake of being thorough I will present an “in the courtroom” report for the entire hearing.

I made my way up to the 2nd floor courtroom at 1:00 for the case management hearing that is scheduled to start at 1:30. The only people in the courtroom, besides court security, are the family of the victim in this case, Ronald Randall. They are seated in the front row on the prosecution side of the courtroom. I usually sit in the first seat on the center aisle, in the second row behind them where I have a great view of Sheley and can see both sides of the courtroom equally well, but today I slide all the way in to the last seat. There is a pole I can lean against and there may be a lot of people here today so I won’t need to move….yes I’m a little lazy today. LOL

At 1:15 the attorneys for both sides start to filter into the courtroom and by 1:25 both attorneys for the defense, Public Defender, James Harrell and his court appointed co-counsel Jeremy Karlin are in their seats. At the prosecution table are Knox County States Attorney John Pepmeyer; and 3 attorneys from the Illinois Attorney General’s Office, AAG Michael Atterberry, AAG Steve Plazibat, and AAG William Elward.

Whiteside County States Attorney Gary Spence enters with the prosecution team and takes a seat behind me, he will be up to bat next in the prosecution of Nicholas Sheley for the deaths of 5 people in his county. The Attorney General’s Office will also assist Mr. Spence in Whiteside County . When Sheley is done in Whiteside County he will go down to Festus, Missouri to stand trial for the deaths of a couple who were visiting from Arkansas. You can see a complete timeline of the alleged killing spree here.

There are 4 members of accredited press in the front row on the defense side today. A few more of Mr. Randall’s family have joined me in the 2nd row and a 5th member of the press takes my normal seat next to them. In the second row on the defense side are two men and a woman who are professional in appearance and seem to have something to do with the defense. I am so focused on trying to figure out who they were, I didn’t even notice Sheley being brought in…..which is kind of odd because normally even if you don’t see him in his bright orange jail garb you hear the clickety clank of his shackles….told you I am tired today… he is seated with 3 or 4 Sheriff’s deputies surrounding him.

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