A new judge has been assigned to the misconduct case of Kane County Coroner Chuck West, who is accused of stealing a television from the home of a dead Carpentersville man in 2007.
Judge John McAdams has been designated to take over for Judge Bruce Lester.
West, who faces up to five years in prison if convicted, is due in court again April 18.
Charles Colburn, a special prosecutor brought in to handle the case, said the reassignment could delay a trial that could have been held in late spring or early summer.
Although there is a new judge, Colburn said rulings by the late-Judge Jordan Gallagher and Lester upholding the charges will still stand.
"As far as trying the case, we don't have to start over," Colburn said, adding he hopes the matter will head to trial this year.
No trial date has been set.
West, an Elgin Republican who is not seeking another term, did not appear in court Thursday because he is hospitalized.
Defense attorney Gary Johnson could not immediately be reached for comment. Johnson had previously tried to have the case dismissed, arguing that the state statute mandating the coroner's duties was vague and unconstitutional.