Delphi defense filing raises concerns of evidence leaks

CARROLL COUNTY, Ind. — Just hours before the anticipated hearing in the Delphi murder case, the defendant, Richard Allen filed several motions after evidence was reportedly leaked to social media posters.

Allen is accused of killing Libby German and Abby Williams not far from the banks of Deer Creek below the Monon High Bridge in Carroll County on February 13, 2017.

Special Judge Fran Gull ordered a hearing in the case last week, stating it was to discuss another hearing on Oct. 31 along with “other matters which have recently arisen.”

This was presumably referencing revelations over the weekend that there was a leak of defense team crime scene evidence involving the case. The hearing on Thursday will be streamed on-air and online for the first time on a 30-minute delay, starting at 2:30 p.m.

Thursday morning, Allen and his defense attorney filed an affidavit under seal, a limited appearance on behalf of Allen’s attorney Andrew Baldwin and a memo regarding possible disqualifications or sanctions.

The memorandum had the most information of the several filings ahead of the hearing. The defense claimed that any issues or concerns regarding the representation of Allen should be focused on the “6th Amendment” and the “rights of the accused.”

Defense attorneys claimed that because Allen had developed a strong and trusting bond with Mr. Baldwin, disqualification of either of his court-appointed attorneys would greatly prejudice his “right to counsel and a timely trial.”

They referenced a 1994 appeals case that involved an accused’s right to counsel of choice. The authority to remove appointed counsel is limited and has resulted in reversals in other jurisdictions, according to the filing.

The court order stated disqualification of counsel is an extreme remedy for any “alleged or perceived violation” of a court’s order.

Many of the cases concerning disqualification of counsel involved conflicts of interest, according to the attorneys.

The filing went on to say the issue before the court involving the dissemination of information [leaked evidence] was created by people not related to the defense of Allen.

“There were three disseminators, one of which committed suicide after the law enforcement investigation began,” the filing read. “Attorney Baldwin did nothing wrong. He was snookered and abused.”

The defense finished the filing stating that Baldwin trusted a friend to respect his office space but he was betrayed. From that moment the defense team has reportedly taken steps to keep all Delphi-related items locked in a room or locked fireproof file cabinet to ensure no items are left unattended and unlocked.

The status hearing is set for Oct. 19 at 2 p.m. The jury trial is scheduled to begin Jan. 8, 2024.

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