February 12th, 2010

Judge Jack Smith granted Defense another extension in Bonnie Craig Murder Trial

Kenneth Dion was identified as the alleged killer by a DNA Hit in CODIS, the national DNA database, November 2006.  Original trial date was set for September 2008 so there would be absolutely no reason for extensions.  It was then set for January 2009.  After 18 months of doing nothing on the case, according to Andrew Lambert, Lee Degrasie was taken off of the case and another public defender was assigned.  Within 2 months that public defender told the judge there was a conflict of interest, which she refused to disclose, and that the case would have to go to the Office of Public Advocacy.  Andrew Lambert has had the case since March 23, 2009.  Trial date had been set for April 19th, 2010.  In August 2009, after Lambert missing 3 pre-trail hearings to set a court date, Lambert insisted that he could handle this case even though his wife had been newly diagnosed with cancer.  Now, after taking one month off to vacation with his family, to recover from dealing with the cancer issue and, according to Lambert, spending 2 months by her bedside in the hospital Lambert needs more time.  He won't be available in August because he has a month vacation planned.  So the judge set the date for August 30th.  Lambert had requested it be set after the Labor Day Weekend.  So we can expect that the trial will be delayed at least until September 2010. 

State Prosecutor, Pat Gullafson has been waiting to retire and told the judge he has commitments and planned to retire before August.  The Judge did nothing to take the prosecutor's nor the victims' needsand schedules into consideration.  The judge, as is always the case, fears an appeal if extensions aren't granted to the defense.