Derrick Allen’s attorney withdraws
Over the objections of Derrick Allen, Allen’s attorney was allowed to withdraw from the case because of his busy schedule.
Allen is facing charges of first-degree murder, first-degree sex assault and felony child abuse in the death of his girlfriend’s 2-year-old daughter in 1998.
Allen pleaded guilty to the charges in 1999, but a judge overturned his conviction in Sept. 2010 because of problems at the SBI lab that tested the girl’s clothing for DNA. However, the N.C. Court of Appeals overturned Hudson’s ruling and ordered a new trial for Allen. He is currently out of custody on pre-trial release.
On Wednesday morning, attorney Mike Klinkosum told Superior Court Judge Elaine Bushfan that he needed to withdraw because he believes he won’t have time to put his best effort into representing Allen because he has two major murder trials scheduled this fall and winter, including a capital case in Johnston County that could run into March, he said.
“I may not be able to try it until maybe summer or fall of 2014,” Klinkosum said. “I felt for Mr. Allen to have effective representation, I should withdraw.”
Assistant District Attorney Roger Echols told Bushfan that he hopes to try Allen next spring.
Allen, wearing a black suit, said he objected, saying he didn’t think it would be an issue.
Bushfan allowed Klinkosum to withdraw and told Allen that she would recommend that the Capital Defender’s Office appoint an attorney from outside of Durham County.