BELLEVILLE – On the date of a hearing for murder suspect David Fields, St. Clair County Circuit Judge Robert Haida canceled the hearing.
Haida continued the case from Dec. 8 to Jan. 3, “due to this court’s unavailability.”
Fields has spent the year in county jail, with no trial date and no court proceedings except Haida’s monthly orders delaying the case.
Fields allegedly killed Carl Silas last Dec. 30, in a Belleville apartment.
Witnesses said Fields and another man forced entry, but investigators for Sheriff Rick Watson have not arrested anyone but Fields.
Special prosecutors pursued an allegation that Circuit Judge Ron Duebbert obstructed the investigation, but they have not charged him.
They brought Duebbert before a grand jury in July, but no indictment resulted.
Fields not only doesn’t know when he will face trial, but he also doesn’t know who will represent him.
His current lawyers, Ryan Neal of Creve Coeur, Missouri, and Brittany Kimble of Maywood, moved last month to declare him indigent so the county can pay them.
They wrote that assignment of a public defender would prejudice Fields because they have spent 11 months on the case.
They wrote that prosecutors told them discovery is continuing.
They planned to call up the motion on Dec. 8, but never got the chance.
In September, Haida ordered Watson and investigators not to share information with news organizations.