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Delphi murders judge asks for delay from Indiana Supreme Court

Judge Fran Gull (WISH Photo)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The Indiana Supreme Court has granted the special judge handling the Delphi murders trial extra time to answer a defense call to remove her from the case.

Judge Frances Gull filed the request Thursday morning with the state’s highest court.

Chief Justice Loretta Rush granted the request Thursday afternoon, but said there would be no additional extensions.

Gull told the court in her brief that she had to find an attorney to represent her in the case after Attorney General Todd Rokita’s office declined to do so.

“Due to the time required for Respondent to engage counsel to represent her, the complexity of the matter, the requirement to respond to the Court’s order on Relator’s Motion for Transcript, and the addition of arguments set forth in Amicus Indiana Public Defender Counsel’s Brief, Respondent requires additional time to submit a Brief Opposing Relator’s Petition and to comply with the Court’s Order on Relator’s Motion for Transcript,” Judge Gull wrote in the court filing.

She asked the court to move the response deadline to November 27 from its current November 16.

Attorneys for Richard Allen, the man charged with two counts of murder, have asked the Indiana Supreme Court to step in and reinstate his original defense team.

Judge Gull ordered Andrew Baldwin and Bradley Rozzi removed from the case citing what she called their “gross negligence” in handling Allen’s case.

State Police are investigating a leak of evidence from Baldwin’s office of documents and crime scene photographs in the deaths of Abby Williams and Libby German.

Allen’s attorneys asked the justices to reject Judge Gull’s request for more time.

In a filing Thursday, Allen’s legal team argued the judge and court were aware of the defense plan to file the emergency request and that any delay causes further harm to Allen

“(Allen) was set to proceed to trial in January 2024 with a well-developed trial strategy and proffered defense,” Allen’s attorneys argue. “Yet due to the actions of Respondents, that trial date has been continued for at least nine months. (Allen) is in a state of limbo and cannot move forward until this action is resolved.”

The Indiana Public Defender Council has also filed with the court, asking the justices to reinstate Baldwin and Rozzi.

Allen’s trial is currently set to begin in October of 2024.

The Indiana Supreme Court has not indicated when it might rule on the pending motions.