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Defendant finds a new lawyer in McLean County's longest pending court cases

A gavel sits on a judge's bench. On top of that photo, the words "WGLT Courts" appears.
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McLean County’s longest pending court cases are back on track following Jeffrey Martin’s success in hiring a new lawyer to handle sexual assault and child pornography charges filed against him in 2016.

The 56-year-old defendant, who has spent the past several months trying to hire private counsel, has retained Chicago lawyer G.G. Gilbert. The lawyer attended a hearing Friday via telephone.

The cases have seen multiple postponements as Martin fired court-appointed lawyers, and others walked away from the cases after claims of physical threats from Martin.

The sexual assault charges stem from alleged incidents in 2014 during the year Martin spent in the home of an elderly woman in Normal who hired him to work on a computer. In addition to the sexual misconduct allegations, the woman told police Martin took money from her and physically assaulted her.

The child pornography charges were filed after police examined a laptop computer, allegedly used by Martin, and found in the woman’s home.

The state has opted to bring Martin to trial first on the child pornography charges.

A Nov. 22 status hearing is scheduled.

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Edith began her career as a reporter with The DeWitt County Observer, a weekly newspaper in Clinton. From 2007 to June 2019, Edith covered crime and legal issues for The Pantagraph, a daily newspaper in Bloomington, Illinois. She previously worked as a correspondent for The Pantagraph covering courts and local government issues in central Illinois.
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