Two men accused of robbing a murdered New Lenox Township man were separated in court Tuesday because their attorneys believe they could give differing stories or pleas.
John H. White, 20, and David D. Reed, 23, both of Chicago, are charged with residential burglary in connection with the June slaying of township resident Dwight Jones. Police said Reed and White helped burglarize Jones' home along with the man charged with his murder, Rodney A. Julun.
Both men were scheduled for a final pretrial hearing Monday in Will County Court, but the defense attorneys asked for more time to settle "a couple more issues."
The attorneys also requested that Reed and White be tried separately. They will still be co-defendants but will no longer appear in court together.
"The defendants may have divergent interests, so it might be best to keep them separate," said Chris Regis, assistant state's attorney.
Regis wouldn't say what the divergent interests were exactly, but said it's possible the two would plea differently or provide different stories. Because of these changes, another pretrial hearing was scheduled for each defendant. White will appear in court Dec. 5 and Reed will be back Dec. 20.
Last week, Julun appeared in court and asked for a speedy trial. In addition to first-degree murder, Julun is charged with one count of home invasion, three counts of residential burglary, one count of robbery and one count of possession of a stolen motor vehicle.
According to police, White and Reed said during interviews that Julun committed the murder. Police say Julun then contacted the two others and together they proceeded to steal numerous items, including the victim's car, from the residence over two days.
Reed and White are both in custody at Will County Jail with a $250,000 bail.