Possible plea deal in stabbing death
By Jim Newton email@example.com | @JimNewton5 October 16, 2013 5:14PM
Derrick C. Taylor
Updated: November 18, 2013 7:42AM
Although the potential for a negotiated plea is being discussed, the trial of a Beach Park man charged with stabbing a Wisconsin woman to death in Zion last year is scheduled to begin Oct. 28.
Derrick Taylor, 39, has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder in the death of Joy Lee, 48, of Bristol, Wisconsin.
Assistant State’s Attorney Reginald Mathews and Taylor’s defense attorney Louis Pissios outlined terms of a possible plea deal before Judge Daniel Shanes in a private conference Wednesday, Oct. 16. Shanes told Taylor in court afterward that it is now up to the defendant to consider the deal or move forward with the trial.
Shanes also heard a motion from Pissios to have statements Taylor made to investigators barred from the trial because police turned away Barry Boches, Taylor’s previous attorney, when he appeared at the Zion Police Department and asked to see Taylor during his first day in custody.
There is a law in Illinois that states if police refuse to let an attorney see his client while he is being questioned, statements made from that point on are not admissible in court.
But Mathews said that because Boches arrived at the police station after Taylor’s interrogation had ended, and because Taylor was given his Miranda rights, the law does not apply to Taylor’s statements.
Shanes agreed, and ruled that the videotaped statements may be used in the trial.
Taylor, who faces a sentencing range of 20 to 60 years if convicted of the first-degree murder charges against him, did not admit to committing the murder during the interrogation but Pissios said he did not want the questioning aired at the trial.
On the evening of March 11, 2012, a passerby reported a body lying in the street in the Trumpet Park industrial park area of Zion. Police found Lee’s body with multiple stab wounds to her head, neck, hands and arms.
Zion police said Taylor knew Lee, but authorities did not have a clear definition of their relationship. Zion Police Chief Wayne Brooks also had said that a “tremendous” amount of physical evidence links him to the murder.
Taylor was arrested early March 12, 2012, and was interviewed for several hours by members of the Lake County Major Crime Task Force.
He has remained in Lake County Jail in lieu of $3 million bond since his arrest.