Judge Rejects DA's Request to Step Aside

Wednesday, Sep 4, 2013  |  Updated 1:04 PM EDT
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Judge Refuses to Step Aside

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An eastern Pennsylvania judge has turned down a prosecutor's request that he recuse himself in a security guard's appeal of his conviction in a shooting death in an after-hours club last year.

Forty-three-year-old Andrew Gesslein II was convicted of voluntary manslaughter in Lehigh County in the April 2012 death of 23-year-old Michael Randolph at the North End Republican Club. He said he acted in self-defense.

Judge Robert Steinberg expressed grave reservations about the conviction before sentencing Gesslein to five to 10 years, the lowest possible penalty.

The (Easton) Express-Times reports Steinberg refused to step aside Tuesday and went on to hear arguments in the appeal.

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Prosecutors said his comments indicated partiality but Steinberg said “a judge is not a potted plant” and comments on a case are allowed.

 


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