INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – A plea deal with the lead suspect in the 2012 south side explosion is not expected in advance of his scheduled June trial, Marion County Prosecutors said Wednesday.
The statement came one month after defense attorneys announced that prosecutors rejected a previous plea offer they had put on the table. Details of that previous offer from Mark Leonard have not been made public.
Leonard, his half-brother Bob Leonard, Jr., Monserrate Shirley, Gary Thompson and Glenn Hults are all charged in connection with the November 2012 house explosion at Richmond Hill that killed Dion and Jennifer Longworth and damaged or destroyed more than 80 homes.
Following an administrative hearing in the case in Indianapolis Wednesday, Marion County Deputy Prosecutor Denise Robinson again said she anticipates the trial will begin as scheduled on June 4 in St. Joseph County. The case was moved there amid concerns over intense media coverage in central Indiana.
“I can’t talk about plea agreements ethically. I can’t talk about anything that’s done outside the courtroom in that context. All I can say is: we’ve got our subpoenas out. We’ve got our hotel reservations made. We’ve made arrangements for the evidence to go to South Bend. We’re going to be prepared to go to trial,” Robinson said.EVIDENCE CHALLENGES
Disagreements also remained Wednesday over what should be allowed as evidence at that trial.
Leonard’s defense team began the hearing by asking Judge John Marnocha that a separate charge of conspiracy to commit murder be ruled inadmissible at the main trial in June. Prosecutors allege Leonard tried to hire a hitman from behind bars in the Marion County Jail to have a key witness in the case killed.
His attorneys argue jurors could be unfairly prejudiced by knowing about that charge, which is likely to be tried separately from the main case.
Robinson said she will fight to have it included.
“I think the importance to the defense of that evidence is how strongly they’re trying to keep it out,” she said. “It’s another piece of the evidence. If we didn’t have it, we’d still be trying this case. But, as I indicated, I think the jury is entitled to hear all of the evidence. And, that includes this particular evidence.”
Leonard’s attorneys have also asked that evidence of Leonard’s alleged involvement in prior ‘insurance scams’ be barred from trial, but that character evidence on witnesses like Robert Smith, a jailhouse informant used by prosecutors, be allowed to be introduced at trial.
Judge John Marnocha agreed to take all requests under advisement. He ruled earlier this month that incriminating statements made about Mark Leonard by Bob Leonard before he was read his Miranda rights will not be admissible at trial.
That ruling will not hinder the state’s case, Robinson said Wednesday.
“As I indicated when we were in South Bend making that argument, there was not much I would have intended to use from those – if anything – at the outset,” she said.TRIAL LOGISTICS
Judge Marnocha also addressed a number of logistical issues surrounding the trial, which is anticipated to take at least six weeks to complete.
At least 280 potential jurors will be summoned for jury selection. Seventy will be called each day. But, prosecutors said Wednesday they don’t anticipate it will take all four days to seat an acceptable jury of 18 people, comprised of 12 jurors and six alternates.
“I don’t think that’s going to be necessary in South Bend. I think his 140 (potential jurors called) for the first two days is more realistic. Obviously, you always get some people who don’t show up. But, I think the 200-some would be too few if this trial would be held in Indianapolis. So, I think the judge is just making sure we have enough jurors to go to trial,” Robinson said.
Once jurors are selected, Judge Marnocha said Wednesday he does not intend to sequester them, except during deliberations.
Leonard’s defense team also asked that he be transported to the St. Joseph County Jail by May 29, in preparation for what will likely be the most extensive and expensive trial in Marion County history.
“We’ve had time to prepare for this, and, as I’ve said, we anticipate going to trial on June 4,” Robinson said. “We’ll be ready.”
INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – A fifth suspect is now charged in connection with the alleged conspiracy leading up to the 2012 south side explosion at Richmond Hill. Glenn Hults was arrested late Tuesday, jail records obtained by I-Team 8 show.
Hults, 48, faces one count of conspiracy to commit arson. Hults was expected to appear before Judge Sheila Carlisle for an initial hearing Wednesday at 1 p.m.
- FULL COVERAGE | Richmond Hill explosion case
He’s accused, along with Monserrate Shirley, Mark Leonard, Bob Leonard and Gary Thompson of being involved in a plot to set the explosion in the Richmond Hill neighborhood that killed Dion and Jennifer Longworth and damaged nearly 80 homes in November 2012. But, prosecutors were quick to point out they don’t believe Hults was involved in the explosion itself.
“Four other individuals charges were directly involved in explosion,” Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry told I-Team 8 Tuesday following the charges. “Mr. Hults is not alleged to be directly involved in the explosion itself, but on a more peripheral level, by agreeing to watch Monserrate Shirley’s daughter.”
Prosecutors allege Hults agreed to keep Shirley’s daughter overnight at his house on the weekend prior to the explosion. That initial explosion attempt failed, prosecutors have alleged.
“The weekend of October 27, he agreed to watch Ms. Shirley’s daughter, and he was doing so with the knowledge that he was doing so because there would be an attempt to burn her house on that evening,” Curry said.
As I-Team 8 was first to report in January, the scope of Hults’ alleged involvement in what prosecutors say was an explosion plot were first publicly revealed by Shirley after she agreed to a plea deal with prosecutors in early January 2015.
As part of that plea agreement Shirley agreed to testify against her co-defendants, and named Hults during interviews as having first had conversations with Mark Leonard on July 4, 2012 about plans to set fire to Shirley’s house. This conversation occurred, Shirley testified, while the three were attending a pool party at a home near Geist Reservoir.
Shirley said she and Leonard had been invited to the party by Hults, who she described as Leonard’s “friend.” According to court documents, Leonard asked Hults to convince Shirley that it would be “easy” to submit an insurance claim if she had a fire in her house.
Hults told detectives he “didn’t remember any conversations about setting arson fires” and didn’t remember Leonard ever asking him to tell Shirley how easy it was to get money from an insurance company after a house fire, according to court documents.
However, court records show Hults did admit to detectives that that he had received a check for $70,000 from his insurance company after a fire in his own home that he attributed to a faulty tanning bed. He told detectives that Gary Thompson, the man charged as the fourth suspect in the Richmond Hill explosion case, installed the tanning bed and had done other electrical work at his house.
Shirley told detectives she initially rejected the plan that July day, saying it was “too risky,” according to court documents.
As I-Team 8 reported in January, speculation surrounding the potential of a fifth suspect’s arrest swirled following the arrest of Thompson that month, but prosecutors refuted claims at the time that further charges were pending. With no new evidence introduced since then, Curry acknowledged that there may be questions about why charges were filed nearly four months later.
“Between the time that that information was provided to our deputy prosecutor and investigators through Ms. Shirley, there’s been some discussions between Glenn Hults and his counsel, and obviously that led to the charges being filed today,” Curry said.
Curry did not confirm whether a plea deal had been offered to Hults, or whether he had rejected such an offer.
Messages left seeking comment from Hults’ attorney were not returned Tuesday.
INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – The trial for the so-called fourth suspect in the 2012 south side house explosion at Richmond Hill is likely to be delayed until at least mid-2016, prosecutors said.
The decision came as Gary Thompson, 44, appeared in court Wednesday for the second time since his arrest in January.
He faces 34 of counts of arson, 12 counts of arson resulting in bodily injury, 1 count of conspiracy to commit arson and two counts of murder. Thompson is accused, along with Monserrate Shirley, Mark Leonard and Bob Leonard, of helping to set the explosion in the Richmond Hill neighborhood that killed Dion and Jennifer Longworth and damaged nearly 80 homes in November 2012.
During the brief hearing Wednesday, Thompson’s attorneys asked for more time to prepare their defense, prompting the judge to cancel an April 6 trial date that had been set in the case. The delay had been anticipated by both sides, prosecutors said.
“We have something on the order of 40,000 pages of discovery to get to his new defense counsel. So, an April date is very unlikely,” said Marion County Deputy Prosecutor Denise Robinson following Thompson’s initial court appearance in January.
Both Mark and Bob Leonard’s trials will be held outside Marion County due to concerns over intense pre-trial media coverage.
Mark Leonard’s trial is set to begin in June in St. Joseph County. Bob Leonard’s trial is scheduled for January 2016 in Allen County.
Thompson’s trial will likely be held after the other two cases conclude, a spokesperson for Prosecutor Terry Curry said Wednesday.
Shirley agreed to plead guilty to conspiracy to commit arson charges in exchange for a reduced sentence to be determined following the conclusion of the other trials. She must testify against her co-defendants under the terms of the agreement. Prosecutors say interviews with Shirley under the agreement helped lead to Thompson’s arrest.
Thompson’s attorneys are expected to ask that his trial also be moved outside Marion County, but no formal motions requesting that have yet been filed. He is scheduled to return to court for a hearing in August.
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WISH) — Defense attorneys for a key suspect in the 2012 south side explosion case acknowledged that their client, Mark Leonard, was willing to take a plea deal, but it appears Marion County prosecutors aren’t interested.
That revelation emerged during a hearing Wednesday in a St. Joseph County courtroom, where Leonard’s trial is set to take place in June.
“No. There’s no negotiations. We are prepared to go to trial on June 4,” said Marion County deputy prosecutor Denise Robinson.
When asked if Leonard offered to take a plea deal, Robinson said, “No plea deal was offered by the state. Ethically, I can’t say anything more.”
During the hearing, one of Leonard’s attorneys, Dave Shircliff, said they had made “good faith plea negotiations.” Before making that statement, Shircliff said “On Feb. 25, Mark Leonard offered …”
He was then cut off by Robinson who objected and asked that plea deals not be mentioned in open court.
Afterwards, none of Leonard’s defense attorneys would talk to reporters.
The main focus of a Wednesday hearing was a fight between prosecutors and defense attorneys over whether statements Bob Leonard made to investigators should be admitted at trial. The defense also wanted to suppress evidence from jail house informant Robert Smith.
Smith allegedly provided evidence to investigators that Mark Leonard was trying to hire someone to kill a witness in the case.
“If someone conspires to kill a state’s witness, we believe that’s highly probative to show that he is, in fact, guilty of that offense,” Robinson said.
The defense also accused prosecutors of giving Smith a secret deal, claiming he might have earned more than simply a bond reduction from prosecutors through his work as a jail house informant on Mark Leonard.
“That would absolutely (be) unethical for a prosecutor to enter into that kind of deal – a secret deal and not divulge it to the defense. I’ve been a prosecutor for more than 20 years. I couldn’t fathom such a thing,” said Robinson.
The judge is expected to rule on the motions to suppress evidence early next week.
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WISH) — A key suspect in the 2012 south side explosion will ask a judge Wednesday to keep potentially incriminating statements made by his brother from being introduced as evidence at his upcoming trial.
Mark Leonard wants to prevent jurors from hearing any statements made to investigators by his brother, Bob Leonard, Jr.
The Leonards are accused along with Monserrate Shirley and Gary Thompson of setting the 2012 blast at Richmond Hill that killed Dion and Jennifer Longworth and damaged more than 80 homes.
In his first appearance in the South Bend courtroom where his trial will be held this summer, Leonard’s attorneys are expected to ask the judge to suppress statements made by an alleged jailhouse informant named Robert Smith.
Smith allegedly provided investigators with evidence that Mark Leonard tried to have a witness in the case killed from behind bars.
They have previously declined to comment on what is behind the request or what the statements contain.
Prosecutors officially opposed both requests but declined to elaborate on why, saying details would come out at Wednesday’s hearing.
“Robert Smith had information about the conspiracy that Mark Leonard is charged with. They are the allegations, the admissions that relate to the conspiracy to kill a witness in the case. And, they are seeking to suppress anything made by Bob Leonard. And, I really can’t speak to factually what that is because it’s not included in the affidavit for probable cause,” said Marion County Deputy Prosecutor Denise Robinson.
Wednesday’s hearing follows several other recent rulings in Leonard’s case that rejected several potential defense strategies.
St. Joseph Superior Court Judge John Marnocha, who will preside over the trial since it was moved out of Marion County, ruled last month that it will not be allowed to be split into two parts, nor will he allow witness testimony be consolidated.
Mark Leonard’s trial is set to begin on June 6.
FORT WAYNE, IN (WISH) – A key suspect in the 2012 south side explosion case will remain behind bars until at least September. That’s when a judge agreed to hear Bob Leonard’s request to reduce his bail amount, along with 15 other requests to exclude specific pieces of evidence at his trial.
Leonard appeared before a judge in Allen County for the first time Wednesday morning since a judge ruled that extensive media coverage would make a fair trial impossible in Marion County.
Leonard is accused, along with his half-brother Mark, Monserrate Shirley and Gary Thompson of setting the explosion at Richmond Hill in November 2012 that killed Dion and Jennifer Longworth and damaged or destroyed more than 80 homes.
Wednesday’s hearing before Judge Frances Gull lasted just 13 minutes, following a lengthy discussion between attorneys in the judge’s chambers. Following that meeting, Gull told the two sides she would address up to 16 different motions that have been filed in the case–12 from the defense and four from prosecutors–during a three-day set of hearings in September.
Most of those motions revolve around pretrial admissibility of evidence in the case, said Marion County Deputy Prosecutor Denise Robinson following Wednesday’s hearing.
“Judge (John) Marnocha heard many of the same motions in Mark Leonard’s case and denied them. They’re standard filings in life without parole of death penalty cases,” she said.
Gull could also hear evidence on Bob Leonard’s request to reduce his bail amount, filed in Marion County last year. But, Robinson said Wednesday she believes the request will be dropped before then.
“It’s my understanding the defense intends to withdraw the let bail motion,” she said. “Some defense attorneys use that, particularly as it existed under the old statute, as a means of finding out what the state’s evidence might be. They were entitled to hear from the state’s witnesses and could get some insight perhaps into what the witnesses would say. But statute has changed in that regard so it’s less useful now in that manner, ” Robinson said.
Leonard’s attorneys declined to comment following Wednesday’s hearing, but told the judge they will be ready for the scheduled trial date of January 19, 2016. Getting to that point, however, Robinson cautioned, will be a significant undertaking, particularly in a case that includes more than 2,000 exhibits and 40,000 documents.
“First and foremost, in this case, we have significant amount of evidence. Basically, a semi-truck load of evidence to bring up and store. And, in essence, we move up an office every time we change venue. Everything you might not commonly think about, from paper and pen to copiers, we have to have handy when we get here. The most difficult part is getting witnesses, most of whom come from Indianapolis. We have to arrange for them to be here, and be here at a certain time. And, what if we don’t get to them on the day we anticipate? Then we have to put them up overnight. Those are the logistical issues,” she said.
It remained unclear Wednesday if Leonard will remain in Allen County or be brought back to Marion County while he awaits trial. His attorneys filed a motion Wednesday asking him to be transferred, but asked for the judge to seal it. Neither side would comment Wednesday on whether the transfer is to Fort Wayne or from Fort Wayne.
“That’s something that probably will be clarified by a court order within the next week or so, where you’ll have access to it,” Robinson said.
With Leonard’s case on hold until September, attention now turns to the first scheduled trial in the case for Mark Leonard. It is scheduled to begin in June in South Bend.
FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WISH) – A key suspect in the 2012 south side explosion case will remain behind bars until at least September.
That’s when a judge agreed to hear his motion to reduce his bail amount. Bob Leonard appeared before a judge in Allen County for the first time Wednesday morning.
Bob Leonard is accused, along with his brother Mark, Monserrate Shirley and Gary Thompson of setting the explosion at Richmond Hill in November 2012 that killed Dion and Jennifer Longworth and damaged or destroyed more than 80 homes.
Bob Leonard’s hearing lasted 13 minutes. Judge Frances Gull was scheduled to address potentially up to 16 different motions that have been filed in the case. Rather than address those Wednesday, Judge Gull set aside three days in September for hearing on all those motions, including Bob Leonard’s request to reduce his bail amount. That’s something prosecutors have said they aren’t sure will happen at that point.
“Some defense attorneys use it particularly as it existed under the old statute as a means of finding out what the state’s evidence might be. They were entitled to hear from the state’s witnesses and could get some insight perhaps into what the witnesses would say. But statute has changed in that regard so it’s less useful now in that manner, ” explained Marion County Deputy Prosecutor Denise Robinson.
The one thing that was decided is Bob Leonard’s trial date. It is set for Jan. 19, 2016. It’s not known if Leonard will remain in Allen County or be brought back to Marion County until that September hearing.
24-Hour News 8’s Troy Kehoe will have more on today’s developments from court on 24-Hour News 8 at 5 p.m.
FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WISH) – A judge has been selected to preside over the second trial in the 2012 south side explosion case. Court records obtained by I-Team 8 show Allen County Judge Frances Gull was appointed to Bob Leonard’s case Friday.
Bob Leonard is accused, along with his brother Mark, Monserrate Shirley and Gary Thompson of setting the explosion at Richmond Hill in November 2012 that killed Dion and Jennifer Longworth and damaged or destroyed more than 80 homes.
Marion County Judge Sheila Carlisle agreed to move his case out of Marion County in early January after prosecutors dropped their objection to change of venue requests last year. Leonard’s half-brother Mark’s case was moved to St. Joseph County. His trial is scheduled to begin in June.
I-Team 8 first reported Leonard’s trial would move to Allen County earlier this month, though no judge was appointed at that time.
Judge Gull set an initial hearing in the case for Wednesday in Fort Wayne. A trial date could be selected at that time.
INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – A judge has rejected several potential defense strategies made by attorneys for one of the suspects in the 2012 south side explosion case. Mark Leonard’s trial will not be split into two parts, nor will witness testimony be consolidated, according to court documents obtained by I-Team 8.
The rulings, made this week by St. Joseph Superior Court Judge John Marnocha, followed a hearing Friday where Leonard appeared in court for the first time since his former girlfriend, Monserrate Shirley, made an ‘about face’ and agreed to tell investigators about his alleged role in the explosion at Richmond Hill.
Leonard and Shirley are accused, along with Bob Leonard, Jr. and Gary Thompson, of setting the November 2012 explosion that killed Dion and Jennifer Longworth and damaged or destroyed more than 80 homes.
Shirley’s testimony resulted in the arrest last month of Thompson, the so-called fourth suspect in the case.
Her testimony also initially prompted Mark Leonard’s lead defense attorney Diane Black to call for his trial to be postponed. She withdrew that request Friday, prompting Judge Marnocha to issue an order this week setting the trial date for June 6 in South Bend.
Black also requested the judge to order prosecutors to present scientific evidence related to Leonard’s arson charges first, ahead of what they called ‘character evidence’ related to the alleged plot to blow up Shirley’s home to collect insurance money. That would prevent ‘prejudice’ from the jury, Black argued.
“That has no basis in law,” Marion County Deputy Prosecutor Denise Robinson responded following the hearing. “They say that to prove arson we can only use science evidence and not use any other type of evidence, which would be similar in a standard murder case to saying we can only put the pathologist on first to prove how a person was killed before we could talk about any other we had as to how a person was killed. And, that’s just something that’s not done.”
Judge Marnocha denied the request without explanation in an order issued Monday.
Marnocha also denied a second request from Leonard’s attorneys to limit testimony from witnesses, including a number of Richmond Hill neighbors who could be called to testify at trial about the losses they suffered due to the explosion.
Repetitive testimony could “invoke unfair sympathy, prejudicing defendant and impugning any following conviction,” Black wrote in her motion. She asked the judge Friday to order such testimony to be consolidated, which he denied in a separate order Monday, noting only that “length of testimony will be evaluated” and that he would not allow the trial to stretch on into eight weeks.
Prosecutors have previously estimated that each trial would take six weeks to complete.
Judge Marnocha also issued rulings on several other outstanding motions in Leonard’s case. One such ruling denied an attempt from his attorneys to limit the amount that prosecutors can pay for expert witness testimony related to the explosion. Leonard’s attorneys noted their own budget caps on expert witness payments through the Marion County Public Defenders officers.
They also argued that some of the expert testimony might mislead the jury.
The judge did agree to grant language changes requested by prosecutors to one of Leonard’s 52 arson charges. Robinson described the request as a ‘technical correction.’
Mark Leonard is scheduled to return to court in Marion County for a hearing on that request on March 18. Gary Thompson is scheduled to return to court on April 1. Bob Leonard’s case was ordered to be moved to Allen County last week, although no court dates have been scheduled in Bob Leonard’s case yet.
INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – New developments came from two different judges Friday in two of the 2012 south side explosion cases. Both Mark and Bob Leonard’s trials are now officially set to be held outside of Marion County.MOVING TO ALLEN COUNTY
As I-Team 8 first reported Thursday, Bob Leonard’s trial will be held in Fort Wayne. Judge Sheila Carlisle signed an order late Friday making the move to Allen County official.
No judge will be assigned to the case likely for several more weeks, prosecutors said. A potential trial date is likely to be issued after that.
“That will be up to the judge up there,” said Marion County Deputy Prosecutor Denise Robinson. “It will take a while I’m sure, given the size of the file, for whatever judge receives it in Allen County to get the file, process it, and determine when we’re coming to Fort Wayne.”
Prosecutors agreed to drop their objection to moving Leonard’s trial last year after his half-brother Mark Leonard’s case was moved to St. Joseph County.
The Leonards are accused along with Monserrate Shirley and Gary Thompson of setting the explosion at Richmond Hill that killed Dion and Jennifer Longworth and damaged or destroyed more than 80 homes.
Following the agreement to select a new trial venue outside Marion County in Shirley’s case in December, prosecutors and Bob Leonard’s defense attorneys signed a joint request to the judge asking that proceedings be initiated to choose a new venue in his case as well. Shirley has since agreed to a plea deal that resulted in the arrest last week of Thompson, the so-called fourth suspect in the case.
Following that deal, prosecutors and defense attorneys were instructed to each submit a list of five counties where they would agree to hold Bob Leonard’s case. The two sides then took turns “striking” counties off the list until only Allen County remained.
Allen County’s courthouse is a venue Marion County prosecutors are familiar with. They spent more than a month in Fort Wayne in 2013 trying former IMPD officer David Bisard.
But, Robinson said Friday the experience with Bisard’s case alone did not seal the deal to return.
“The primary consideration in this case was an urban setting with a court large enough and capable enough to handle this type of trial,” Robinson said.
Messages left for Leonard’s attorney were not returned Friday.TRIAL DATE STICKS
Mark Leonard’s trial is scheduled to be held in June in South Bend.
He remained silent as he walked to court to meet with St. Joseph County Judge John Marnocha for the first time Friday. Marnocha agreed to hold the hearing in Indianapolis to avoid transportation costs associated with moving Leonard to South Bend.
It was Leonard’s first court appearance since his former girlfriend Monserrate Shirley made an ‘about face’ and agreed to tell investigators about his alleged role in the explosion at Richmond Hill. Last week, her testimony resulted in the arrest of Gary Thompson, the so-called fourth suspect in the case.
Her testimony also initially prompted Mark Leonard’s defense attorneys to call for his trial to be postponed.
But, in court Friday, Leonard’s attorney Diane Black withdrew the request, saying her team can be prepared to begin in June. That decision came despite an admission from Judge Marnocha that he was prepared to grant a six-month delay in the case.
“I’m glad that didn’t happen,” responded Robinson following the hearing. “The victims have been waiting over two years for justice in this case. The victims deserve their day in court. And, they have expressed frustration at the delay, and I understand their frustration with it.”ARGUMENTS UNDERWAY
Pre-trial arguments between the two sides are just getting started, however.
Chief among them is a request from Leonard’s attorneys for the judge to order prosecutors to present scientific evidence related to arson charges first, ahead of what they called ‘character evidence’ related to the alleged plot to blow up Shirley’s home to collect insurance money. That would prevent ‘prejudice’ from the jury, Black argued to the judge.
“That has no basis in law,” Robinson responded following the hearing. “They say that to prove arson we can only use science evidence and not use any other type of evidence, which would be similar in a standard murder case to saying we can only put the pathologist on first to prove how a person was killed before we could talk about any other we had as to how a person was killed. And, that’s just something that’s not done.”
Black also told the judge she plans to take her own deposition from Shirley in mid-March, and asked for a deadline extension to accomplish that, which he granted.
Judge Marnocha will also consider a request from Leonard’s defense team asking that all statements made by Bob Leonard and Robert Smith be prohibited from being introduced as evidence at Mark Leonard’s trial. Prosecutors have opposed that request.
“Robert Smith had information about the conspiracy that Mark Leonard is charged with. They are the allegations, the admissions that relate to the conspiracy to kill a witness in the case. And, they are seeking to suppress anything made by Bob Leonard. And, I really can’t speak to factually what that is because it’s not included in the affidavit for probable cause,” Robinson said.
Mark Leonard is scheduled to return to court in Marion County for a hearing on that request on March 18.
The timeline for Thompson’s case remains more unclear. He is scheduled to return to court next month.
In the meantime, Robinson said investigation into the case will continue. But, additional charges now seem unlikely, even after Shirley named additional potential persons of interest in the case.
“We have several other people charged,” she said. “There’s no one else at this time that we are intending on charging. We’re prepared to go to trial and I think the victims are prepared to go to trial and get this over with.”