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Man accused of killing Indian Head Park teen decides not to represent himself

John L. Wils(left) has been charged with murder 14-year-old Kelli O'LaughlIndian Head Park

John L. Wilson (left) has been charged with the murder of 14-year-old Kelli O'Laughlin of Indian Head Park

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Updated: June 4, 2012 1:24PM

The man accused of killing an Indian Head Park teenager in her own home will not act as his own attorney as he previously wished, he told his trial judge Wednesday.

His hands shackled to his waist, John Wilson, 38, agreed to be represented by Assistant Public Defender David McMahon.

Wilson has pleaded innocent to stabbing Kelli O’Laughlin, 14, in her home in October.

His behavior in court since then prompted Judge John J. Hynes to have Wilson evaluated for mental fitness. At his last appearance, he was deemed fit by Cook County experts, but told Hynes he wanted to fire his private attorney and represent himself.

Prosecutors said he was on parole when he fatally stabbed O’Laughlin in her home on Oct. 27 after she apparently surprised Wilson when she returned home from Lyons Township High School.

Wilson was burglarizing the home, they said, and then stabbed the girl in her neck and chest.

He grabbed her phone on his way out and used it, prosecutors said, to send taunting messages to O’Laughlin’s mother. Police caught him about a week later with the help of cell-phone tracking technology.

Wilson had spent 17 of the last 20 years in prison and was on parole at the time of his arrest. He is being held without bail in a state prison because of the parole violation.

Wilson returns to court on June 27.

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