Murder case trial dates moved to June

The trial for a man accused of killing a 4-year-old child will not take place until June after the defendant waived his right to a speedy trial during a hearing on Friday.

Trial dates scheduled for February in Michael C.R. Stapleton’s case were vacated and the trial is now scheduled for June 6 through 10.

Stapleton was indicted last month on multiple felony charges, including three counts of murder, in connection to the Nov. 29, 2015, death of Brett Jaynes II.

The Champaign County Dispatch Center received a 911 call from Stapleton at 254 Gunn St., North Lewisburg, on that date. He reported Jaynes was non-responsive and experiencing labored breathing.

Following Jaynes’ death, bruises were observed on the head, face, abdomen, buttocks and legs of the child. A medical examiner made the preliminary conclusion that the cause of death was homicide as a result of a hemorrhage due to blunt force trauma to the abdomen and the head, causing internal bleeding.

During Friday’s hearing, Attorney Christopher M. Bucci, Stapleton’s attorney, informed the court that the defense was going to request a continuation of the trial date due to the substantial amount of discovery, to have time to determine if any relevant motions need to filed and if any experts need to be summoned to trial for the defense.

Judge Nick Selvaggio explained to Stapleton that speedy trial laws dictate he must be brought to trial within 270 days of his arrest and every day he spends in jail counts towards this time period bringing the period down to 90 days. Selvaggio added the court is required to waive speedy trial to a specific time.

Champaign County Prosecutor Kevin Talebi suggested a future trial date should be decided on to give all parties certainty and allow for witnesses to be notified. The parties agreed the trial would start on June 6 and Stapleton waived his speedy trial rights.

A status conference is still scheduled for Jan. 19 and Selvaggio said the court anticipates scheduling one hearing a month to ensure the case is moving along.

If convicted, each murder charge against Stapleton holds an indefinite term of 15 years to life in prison.


By Nick Walton

Nick Walton can be reached at 937-652-1331 Ext. 1777 or on Twitter @UDCWalton.