NASHVILLE, Ind. — For the second time in this case, the trial for the man accused of murdering Indiana University student Hannah Wilson has been delayed.
Daniel Messel appeared in court today for a hearing about delaying his trial, which had been set to start June 1.
The Bloomington man is charged with murdering the 22-year-old student from Fishers in April 2015; her body was found about 10-miles northwest of IU’s Bloomington campus in Brown County.
Messel’s trial was originally supposed to start this past February, but a continuance was granted in the case. Messel’s attorney Dorie Maryan asked the judge for another continuance today because she says she needs more time for depositions and to review evidence.
During the hearing, Maryan said she’s had trouble securing experts who can explain the blood stain patterns, and she’s had a hard time understanding the PING data in this case. “It’s more complicated than I thought,” Maryan said referring to the PING data. She also mentioned a test jury might be beneficial and expressed concerns about finding an unbiased jury.
Prosecutor Ted Adams told the judge, “A test jury would only generate more publicity.”
Judge Judith Stewart said she realizes “both sides are diligently preparing for this case,” but she also noted that a “lengthy” continuance had already been granted. She said, “What it boils down to is — can the defense be prepared to defend Messel?”
Maryan answered, “No.”
At that point, Judge Stewart started looking through a calendar to discuss possible trial dates. Maryan had conflicts with other clients who had trials in the month of July, so they started looking at September and October.
Judge Stewart then said “that’s too long” and eventually shut her calendar and said she would have to take a look at things.
Around 3:30 p.m., Judge Stewart granted a continuance in the case.
They will meet tomorrow to determine a new date and discuss a possible change of venue.