CARROLL COUNTY, Ind. — Judge Fran Gull has thrown out the filing made by former Richard Allen defense attorney Bradley Rozzi that argued that Gull should be removed from the Delphi murders case due to claims that the judge pressured the defense attorneys to withdraw themselves from the high profile case.
The move comes after a flurry of exchanges between the former defense attorney and the Allen County judge following a shocking court hearing last week that ended with Gull announcing that both of Allen’s defense attorneys would be withdrawing from the case.
Rozzi argued that Richard Allen, the man accused of killing Abby Williams and Libby German outside of Delphi in 2017, never signed off on a change of counsel.
At last Friday’s hearing, Gull announced that Allen’s other defense attorney, Andrew J. Baldwin, was “voluntarily withdrawing” from the case and said Rozzi would be following Baldwin’s lead and withdrawing in the coming days. The withdrawals came on the heels of an evidence leak traced back to Baldwin.
Allen’s other defense attorney, Andrew J. Baldwin, claimed he was “snookered” and “betrayed” by a former employee who had unauthorized access to Delphi evidence in Baldwin’s office and leaked the evidence to a Facebook Delphi follower.
In a shocking turn, Rozzi recently filed a motion calling on Judge Gull to be recused from the Delphi case after suddenly backpedaling on the previous story of his impending withdrawal from the case and instead stating he did not want to withdraw from the case and instead wished for Gull to be thrown off the murder trial.
Now, however, that very motion is being stricken from the records. In an order issued by Gull on Friday, the judge said that Rozzi was withdrawn from the Delphi case on Oct. 19 and therefore was no longer the legal counsel of record for Richard Allen. The clerk was then ordered to remove Rozzi’s filing calling for the removal of Gull from the recordbooks and note that it was filed in error since Rozzi is no longer considered legally a part of the case due to being removed prior to him filing the motion on Oct. 25.
David Hennessy, an attorney representing Rozzi and Baldwin, recently argued against Gull and claimed she “strong-armed Attorneys Rozzi and Baldwin” into offering oral withdrawals from the case and contends Gull doesn’t have the authority to direct the clerk to strip Baldwin and Rozzi’s names from the court docket without a filed Notice of Withdrawal or a valid written motion.
Defense attorneys move to challenge Gull
Hennessy provided FOX59/CBS4 with advance copies of a Motion to Reconsider that he intends to file on Friday in response to Gull’s orders of having the defense attorneys removed from the case, having new attorneys assigned and having Rozzi’s request for the judge to recuse herself stricken from the record.
In the soon-to-be-filed motion, Hennessey calls on the court to reconsider the “erroneous order to the Clerk of the Carroll County and the removal of appointed counsel without the opportunity to be heard.”
“No judge has the authority to oversee the clerk or order the clerk to alter the record of court filings,” Hennessy wrote in the filing.
Hennessy continues to allege that Baldwin’s “oral motion” to withdraw from the case on Oct. 19 is “a nullity and invalid” due to Baldwin never filing a written motion to withdraw. Hennessy said Baldwin has no intention to file said motion either. Rozzi also does not intend to file a motion to withdraw.
“There have been no valid motions to withdraw by appointed counsel,” Hennessy argues in the motion. “There has been no order of disqualification. There is no legitimate basis for disqualification.”
Hennessy’s motion also contends that the judge “loses the authority and jurisdiction to make rulings on other court motions or issue orders other (than) a hearing” upon the filing of the Motion for Recusal and To Disqualify — the motion filed on behalf of Rozzi just days ago which Gull ordered stricken from the record.