Vanecko defense not planning to seek recusal for Judge Hill - FOX 32 News Chicago

Vanecko defense satisfied with Judge Hill for case: EXCLUSIVE

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

The judge assigned to the Richard Vanecko case assured both sides earlier this week that he could be fair and impartial, despite his long history as a prosecutor, and his ties to former Mayor Daley.

SEE: Daley nephew charged in 2004 death

FOX 32 News has now learned that at least one of the parties in the case is satisfied with his assurances and won't be seeking another judge.

Richard Vanecko's appearance in court earlier this week was fairly routine, until Judge Arthur Hill decided to make some disclosures regarding his own past.

Vanecko is charged with involuntary manslaughter in connection with the death of 21-year-old David Koschman. Prosecutors say Vanecko punched the Mount Prospect man during a late night argument on Division Street. Koschman died eleven days later.

Vanecko is the nephew of former Mayor Richard M. and Judge Hill disclosed that he had worked under Daley as a state's attorney. He also said Daley had later appointed him to the CTA board and that he had done some municipal bond work when Daley was mayor. And while Judge Hill did not disclose it on Monday, he also appeared in a campaign commercial endorsing Daley when Daley first ran for mayor.

The Judge told both sides he could be impartial, but gave them until next week to indicate whether they would ask him to recuse himself from the case.

On Wednesday, Marc Martin, one of Vanekco's defense attorneys, told FOX 32's Larry Yellen, "We don't intend to seek recusal. We accept Judge Hill's assurance that he can be fair and that's good enough for us."

Dan Webb, the special prosecutor on the case, did not return our calls. Law Professor Len Cavise says it's the prosecution that's more likely to ask the judge to withdraw.

"They're much more sensitive to the appearance of impropriety, and if they get a conviction, they want to make sure it gets preserved in the court of appeals," says Cavise.

It's also the prosecution that's more likely to be concerned about Judge Hill having ties to former Mayor Daley.

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