Despite his attorneys’ request, defendant does not want to delay murder trial
BY TERESA AUCH SCHULTZ email@example.com February 17, 2014 2:26PM
Updated: February 18, 2014 11:18AM
An East Chicago member of the Imperial Gangsters street gang who could be executed if convicted of killing six people does not want to delay his April trial.
Juan Briseno made that request in a letter to U.S. District Judge Philip Simon that was filed Thursday.
“I have been incarcerated for a little over 32 months, and I feel that my attorneys had enough time to prepare for trial,” Briseno wrote.
Briseno was set to go on trial at the U.S. District Court in Hammond on April 7 on charges of racketeering, murdering six people and trying to murder four others.
However, his attorneys filed a motion in January, asking to delay that trial until September.
They said in the motion they need more time to go over evidence and for an expert to prepare evidence for sentencing in case Briseno is convicted. Prosecutors agreed with a continuation, but only to July.
Simon granted the request, without setting a new trial date, after a status hearing Thursday.
The judge did order both sides to meet for even more status hearings every two weeks and ordered Briseno to be at the next one, on Feb. 28, when they would again discuss a new trial date.
Briseno wrote in his letter that his attorneys had approached him about the possibility of delaying the trial but that he told them he didn’t want to.
“I truly believe that they are continuing it for reasons unknown to me,”he wrote.
Briseno is the last of 24 defendants in the case. One other, Richard Reyes, was found guilty last month of racketeering and murder.
The rest pleaded guilty to various charges.