Now entering the fourth calendar year since 14-year-old Kelli O’Laughlin was found brutally murdered in her Indian Head Park Home, the case that seemed headed for a May trial date may be pushed back again.
The pro-bono attorney for John Wilson Jr., 41, the man charged in Kelli’s murder in October 2011, wants to hire their own investigator and DNA expert revealed during a status hearing last Thursday, the Hinsdale Doings reported.
The request marked another twist which at one point saw Wilson defending himself. Wilson seemed headed for a May ## trial but these new requests may set that date back.
John Paul Carroll told Cook County Associate Judge John J. Hynes in court last Thursday that he wants to hire a former Chicago police detect to re-question prosecutors list of witnesses to determine if they are going to be good witness and stand by their testimony, the Hinsdale Doings reported.
Cook County prosecutors protested vehemently to the requests, stating that the May 19 date they selected was no longer tenable because it would take at least 45 days to review the defense experts’ findings.
Carroll said he made the request because he can’t understand the state’s DNA analysis. He wants to hire his own DNA expert from California to interpret it.
Prosecutors argued with the judge that DNA samples taken from a winter hat found inside the O’Laughlin’s house matched Wilson, but the judge granted the defense’s request anyway.
The judge did turn down another request by the defense to revisit the O’Laughlin home.
According to Indian Head Park Police, Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart and Illinois State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez, Wilson on Oct. 27, 2011 broke into the rear of O'Laughlin's home on the 6300 block of Keokuk Avenue by putting by putting a rock in a knit cap and hurling it through the dining room window, Patch reported in 2011. .
After he was found by Kelli O’Laughlin, Wilson allegedly used a butcher knife from a cutlery block in the family’s kitchen to stab her repeatedly in the back, neck and chest. He then dragged her body from the family room into the kitchen.
Both the knife and the knit cap were found at the scene of the crime; a DNA profile from the cap matches Wilson’s own.
For the O’Laughlin’s, the delay means they are now able to use the time to focus on handing out scholarships in their dead daughter’s name, according to the R.I.P. Kelli O’Laughlin Facebook page:
“This time of year for the O’Laughlin's is when they would take the time to go someplace special with their children. It is also a time when they would be getting ready to celebrate their youngest child’s birthday on April 2nd. Kelli would have turned 17.”
Judge Hynes has given Carroll until April 7 to tell him who plans to hire and their hourly rates.