Statements upheld in Burlington murder case; email hearing delayed

  • Daniel Rak is charged with murdering his father in Burlington Township.

    Daniel Rak is charged with murdering his father in Burlington Township.

 
 
Updated 3/3/2017 5:29 PM

A Kane County judge ruled Friday that statements of a Burlington Township man accused of murdering his father in February 2016 were voluntarily made to authorities.

A move by defense attorneys to dismiss the charges against Daniel Rak, 31, over an email breach was delayed until March 16.

 

Rack is accused of first-degree murder in the death of this father, Jeffrey, 58, who was found unresponsive in his home on Engel Road.

The younger Rak admitted to detectives he punched his dad two days before his death. Public Defender Kelli Childress argued Rak was intoxicated, vomiting and cold during questioning.

Judge D.J. Tegeler acknowledged Rak was drunk but said the interrogation video showed him walking normally, texting on his phone and conversing with his mom and detectives.

Tegeler ruled Rak was not "grossly intoxicated" to the point where he could not knowingly waive his Miranda rights, or right to remain silent.

Tegeler also noted that at one point, Rak asked to speak to detectives.

"At no point did he ever waver as to what happened that day," Tegeler said. "He says many times that he did not kill or commit murder. He's very adamant about that."

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Childress also has filed a motion seeking to dismiss the charges against Rak.

Childress argues that attorney-client privilege was compromised last fall when she sought access to email communications between prosecutors and law enforcement on the case.

The county's IT department did a search of all emails under "Rak" or the criminal case number and gave them to prosecutors, including emails between attorneys and investigators on Rak's defense team.

Prosecutors have said the emails were not read and deleted immediately after they realized what happened.

The hearing was delayed Friday because Childress' amended motion wasn't turned over to prosecutors until Friday morning.

Rack is tentatively set for a jury trial May 1. If convicted, he faces 20 to 60 years in prison.

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