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updated: 3/29/2013 9:56 AM

Trial stalls for man accused of burning girlfriend

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Associated Press

BENTON, Ill. -- The southern Illinois trial for a man accused of dousing his girlfriend with chemicals and setting her on fire has been delayed over a switch in defense attorneys.

The (Carbondale) Southern Illinoisan reports that a judge in Franklin County postponed Christopher Rollins' trial after accepting a request by his attorney to withdraw from the case. The judge appointed a public defender to represent 28-year-old Rollins.

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The trial on an aggravated battery charge was to have been held next week.

West Frankfort police have said that emergency responders dispatched last August to a report of a woman burning in a backyard found smoke coming from the home. Then they found 22-year-old victim Tessa Leech and components of a meth lab.

Leech survived but sustained burns over much of her body.

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