Indianapolis News and HeadlinesDelphi Murders


Richard Allen's former attorneys want judge removed

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Posted at 1:05 PM, Nov 06, 2023
and last updated 2023-11-06 13:33:39-05

DELPHI — The former attorneys for the man accused of killing two young girls in Delphi have asked the Indiana Supreme Court to kick the judge off the case.

Attorneys for Brad Rozzi and Andrew Baldwin say Special Judge Fran Gull was wrong when she accused them of gross negligence and forced them to withdraw from Richard Allen's case last month.

The lawyers want the state's high court to reinstate them and appoint a new judge.

"No Indiana court has ever tolerated a trial judge removing a lawyer from a case, over the client’s objection, based on the judge’s subjective belief the lawyer is negligent, or even 'grossly negligent,'" attorneys Mark K. Leeman and Cara Schaefer Wieneke said in a 21-page brief filed Monday in the Indiana Supreme Court.

"And courts across the country regularly issue extraordinary writs in criminal cases to reinstate defense attorneys who have been kicked off cases for conduct the trial court found upsetting or negligent."

Allen was been charged with murder in the 2017 deaths of Libby German and Abby Williams. Gull, according to Monday's filing, removed the attorneys for a series of negligent acts that included:

  • the release of a press release prior to a gag order;
  • unintentionally emailing a discovery log to a third party;
  • and for the leak of crime scene photos by a former employee who accessed the files in Baldwin's office without permission.

Allen told Gull he wanted Rozzi and Baldwin to represent him. Gull denied the request.
"I cannot and will not allow them to represent you," Gull told Allen.

Gull appointed attorneys Robert Scremin and William Lebrato to represent Allen and delayed the trial until Oct. 15, 2024.

Rozzi and Baldwin claim Gull's actions violate Allen's Constitutional rights to chose his own counsel and to have a speedy trial.