The family of Philadelphia police Sgt. Robert Wilson III delivered an impassioned plea for justice Wednesday morning after lawyers for his accused killers asked for a delay.
A defense team for Carlton Hipps and Ramone Williams told a judge they needed additional time to prepare for trial. A new pretrial hearing was set for June with a two-week jury trial expected to start in November.
But a campaign promise by Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner put into question whether the death penalty will be sought.
Wilson's family has accused Krasner's office of slowing down the case and questioned his previous relationship with defense attorney Michael Coard.
"Our family is very angry," Wilson's sister, Shakira Wilson-Burroughs, told NBC10. "There's more cooperation between Krasner and the defense attorneys. My brother's case - there is no possible way it can be tried fairly."
Krasner's office issued a statement in response, saying that while Coard was a volunteer for the district attorney's transition team, the two have not spoken "about this case or any other case" since he took office.
"It remains a death penalty case at this time," Krasner spokesman Ben Waxman said in a statement. "The Philadelphia District Attorney's Office is committed to fighting for justice in the horrific murder of Sgt. Wilson."
Hipps and Williams, who are brothers, are accused of gunning down Wilson during a robbery attempt at a North Philadelphia GameStop store in 2015. Wilson was in full uniform buying his son a gift when two armed robbers entered and announced a holdup.
Wilson diverted gunfire away from store staff and customers during a shootout with the suspects. He was hit six times by gunfire and later died from his injuries.
Wilson's family has asked Krasner to turn the case over to the state's attorney general. The district attorney's office says they continue to meet with the Wilson family and are reviewing the cause through the Homicide Sentencing Committee.
"Krasner, who already met with some members of Sgt. Wilson's family, understands their trauma and continues to extend his support and condolences during this difficult time," Waxman said in a statement.
Hipps and Williams remain jailed.