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|Death Penalty Sought in Sheley Case
|POSTED 4:31pm, UPDATED 4:53pm 9/3/08 A Sterling man accused of going on a killing spree that resulted in the deaths of eight people in two states -- one of which occurred in Galesburg -- will now face the death penalty if he's convicted.
Knox County State's Attorney John Pepmeyer filed documents during a hearing in court Wednesday afternoon indicating that he will seek the death penalty for 28-year old Nicholas Sheley.
Sheley is accused of bludgeoning to death 65-year old Ronald Randall at a local car wash, then depositing his body behind the east Main Street Hy Vee in late-June. Sheley faces ten-counts of first-degree murder in Knox County, along with other charges of Aggravated Kidnapping, Aggravated Vehicular Hijacking, Robbery, Armed Robbery, and Possession of a Stolen Vehicle, and also faces murder charges in Whiteside County and just outside St. Louis for deaths there.
Because the death penalty will be sought, Judge James Stewart says rules require a second counsel to be appointed for Sheley. Attorney Jeremy Karlin will represent Sheley along with Public Defender Jim Harrell.
Pepmeyer and his co-counsel from the Illinois Attorney General's Office also filed nearly 25-hundred pages of discovery documents and nearly one-hundred CD's of more discovery.
Judge Stewart also granted a prosecution motion that six pieces of evidence have DNA testing and other analysis be conducted on them. Stewart granted the motion despite the insistence of Sheley's attorneys that they be allowed more time to look over documents since Karlin had just been appointed. Sheley, however, told the court himself that he didn't want any sort of delay, and that if he had to fire his attorneys and find other counsel in order to keep the trial moving, so be it.
Stewart Wednesday also set ground rules for the case going forward. Anyone who wants to take part in the case -- including attorneys and audience members -- must be in the courtroom before the hearing starts and can't leave, with the exception of the media.
A case management conference related to the DNA ruling has been scheduled for next Thursday afternoon, with a tentative trial date of October 14th.
(Nicholas Sheley -- WGIL News File Photo)
|09 04 08 by Newsroom
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