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Family wants judges to step aside

Register • Apr 22, 2013 at 9:08 AM

Ansted and Dewey appointed Tiffin attorney Dean Henry to serve as special prosecutor in the criminal investigation in early February, despite his role as defense counsel representing the county. 

"The circumstances make it clear that judges Ansted and Dewey cannot continue to preside over the criminal investigation under the rules governing judicial conduct," McGookey said Monday morning, preparing to file the motion asking them to remove themselves.

Click here to read the court filing.

Get Tuesday's Register for update on the court administrator's meeting with a key witness. Click here for the ePaper, for home delivery or buy the Register daily at a newsstand near you. 

McGookey contends court administrator Brock Kimmet met with a key witness during a break in a deposition of the witness in February. He provided affidavits from from witnesses who were in a courthouse hallway who stated in the sworn statements they heard Kimmet tell the witness to "stick to her story." 

The meeting was improper, according to McGookey.

"Under the rules of professional conduct, which apply to the court and court staff, it's prohibited for the court or staff member to meet with a witness and discuss a matter without all parties being notified and given the opportunity to be present," McGookey said. "That's an ex parte communication, which is directly prohibited."

Kimmet has said no meeting took place, but referred to a court security issue without providing any details as to how that might relate to the purported meeting. He has not responded to calls and inquiries seeking clarification. 

Judges Ansted and Dewey have not returned phone calls or responded to inquiries seeking comment or clarification. 

Dean Henry has provided little comment or clarification on his dual role as prosecutor and defense counsel, an arrangement legal scholars and experts have said is problematic with conflicting responsibilities. 

The Limberios family also wants Henry removed as special prosecutor and have him turn over the probe to an independent agency. McGookey asked that a decision be made on Tuesday, during a scheduled court hearing.

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Want to go

What: Limberios death probe court hearing

When: 1:30 p.m. Tuesday

Where: Sandusky County Courthouse, 128 Park, Fremont 

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