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Vanecko court hearing set for next week

Judge Maureen P. McIntyre

Judge Maureen P. McIntyre

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Updated: February 13, 2013 6:11AM

The McHenry County judge who was chosen to preside over the involuntary-manslaughter case of Richard J. “R.J.” Vanecko, a nephew of former Mayor Richard M. Daley accused in the 2004 death of David Koschman, has scheduled a hearing for next week.

It’s the judge’s first since being handed the politically charged case.

McHenry County Circuit Judge Maureen P. McIntyre set the hearing for 1:30 p.m. Jan. 18 at the Cook County branch courthouse in Rolling Meadows. That’s the closest courthouse to McHenry County in Cook County.

McIntyre was picked to hear the case after the Illinois Supreme Court agreed with Cook County’s chief judge, Timothy Evans, that the case shouldn’t be handled by a Cook County judge because of the potential for conflicts of interest, or the appearance of such conflicts.

Many Cook County judges have ties to the Daley family. The first judge given the case, by random selection, stepped aside. He had worked for Daley when Daley was Cook County state’s attorney.

Vanecko, 38, is accused of knocking Koschman, 21, to the ground on April 25, 2004, during a drunken confrontation on Division Street west of Dearborn. A grand jury indicted Vanecko on Dec. 3 following an investigation by a special prosecutor appointed last April following a Chicago Sun-Times investigation.

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