Martin & Kent, L.L.C. Martin & Kent, L.L.C.

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Convicted Killer Waives Right to Appear at Sentencing Hearing

Since F.R. was bludgeoned to death in his appliance store nearly 20 years ago, a second man has been sentenced to life for the killing.

On Tuesday, Aug. 12, 2014, the second man found to be guilty of killing the Waukegan appliance store owner in 1994 was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. In an unusual maneuver, the convicted killer, H.W. decided not to be present at the sentencing hearing.

Before his sentence hearing, H.W. made a brief court appearance in a Lake County courtroom to make a statement that he was waiving his right to be present. While Judge Mark Levitt granted HW's wishes, he did note his objections.

"It is my strong preference that you do participate...You can and are a vital part of a proceedings," Levitt said.

Once the judge confirmed that H.W. would not lose his right to appeal the verdict, H.W. held fast to his decision to be absent from the sentencing hearing.

"I don't want to be here anymore," said H.W.

H.W.'s conviction came in April, long after another man, J.E. had been wrongfully convicted and spent years behind bars.

The victim's daughter, K.C. spoke of how he didn't get to see his 13 grandchildren grow up with the same values he grew up with, and how he didn't get to see the business grow from 3 stores to 17. He also didn't see five of the grandchildren work for the family business.

"This crime forever changed the life of everyone who knew him, but especially his family," she said.

H.W. has maintained his innocence and will be appealing his verdict.

J.E., the other man who was convicted of killing the victim, was convicted of the killing in 1996 after giving what he says was a coerced confession. J.E. is currently in prison on separate convictions.

Have you been arrested on manslaughter or murder charges? If so, we urge you to contact a DuPage County criminal defense attorney from Martin & Kent, L.L.C. as soon as possible. With more than 42 years of collective experience and over 10,000 criminal cases under our belt, we have the knowledge and skills necessary to effectively defend you!

Call our office today to schedule your free, initial consultation !

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