Bliefnick trial start remains set for May 22

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QUINCY — Both the defense and the prosecution say they will be ready to begin the first-degree murder trial of Tim Bliefnick on May 22.

Bliefnick is accused of killing his estranged wife, Rebecca Bliefnick, on Feb. 23. Bliefnick was arrested on March 13 on two first-degree murder charges and one count of home invasion. He remains in the Adams County Jail without bond.

Because Bliefnick is being held without bond, state law requires an expedited court start date of within 90 days from the date of Bliefnick’s incarceration, unless the defense requests an extension.

Bliefnick’s attorney, Casey Schnack, said she would be ready to begin jury selection on Monday, May 22. Adams County Assistant State’s Attorney Josh Jones said the prosecution also would be ready.

Circuit Judge Robert K. Adrian said the jury pool consists of 79 people. Both lawyers agreed to four alternate jurors along with the 12 who will be seated.

Adrian said he anticipated opening arguments beginning on Tuesday, May 23.

Jones and co-counsel Laura Keck anticipate calling between 60 and 70 witnesses for the prosecution and would take the entire first week to present its case, which means Schnack would begin presenting her defense after the Memorial Day weekend. She said she anticipated two days to call her witnesses, with closing arguments to heard no later than Friday, June 2.

The case will be heard in Courtroom 2A, the largest courtroom in the building. Adrian said he wanted to assign seating for members of Rebecca Bliefnick’s family, as well as members of Tim Bliefnick’s, since he is anticipating a large crowd.

Adrian also said he would allow cameras in the courtroom. Media will have one one pool still camera and one pool video camera.

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