Suspect In Police Commander's Murder Makes 3rd Court Appearance

Steve Miller
March 09, 2018 - 5:28 pm

Chicago Police

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CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- The man accused of shooting and killing Chicago Police Commander Paul Bauer has been formally indicted, and Friday afternoon he made his third court appearance at 26th and California.

The murder case against 44-year-old Shomari Legghette is contained in a 56-count indictment.

Legghette's court appearance -- like the one on Wednesday -- was brief. The judge set Monday for his next one.

Legghette will be assigned a judge, and the charges against him will be read. Then he will be asked how he pleads.

Outside court,

Richard Kling
Richard Kling, Chicago-Kent College of Law professor (Steve Miller/WBBM Newsradio)
, was asked about prosecutors' decision to seek a grand-jury indictment.

"The other way is an information, which the state could return after a preliminary hearing in front of a judge.  Because of the nature of the case, it's not unusual for them to take it directly to the grand jury, which is what they did,” he explaiened.

Why not go the route of a preliminary hearing instead?

"There's an issue of what witnesses would have to be produced to establish probable cause, if it went in front of a judge," Kling said.

"In a grand jury, it's a secret proceeding. The defense lawyer doesn't get to be there. The defendant is not there. The rules of evidence don't apply. And so it's much easier to get an indictment."