Judge Approves Subpoenas in Marni Yang Case

Petition for a new trial moves forward as prosecutors seek to dismiss

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 A Lake County judge ruled Thursday that attorneys for Marni Yang can have access to evidence they claim is being withheld from them.

The judge issued subpoenas ordering that fingerprints found at the crime scene in 2009 be submitted to the Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS) for analysis.

Attorney Jed Stone said one print found on a doorknob at victim Rhoni Reuter’s Deerfield townhouse was not a match to her or Yang. Stone is hoping that print could point to someone who he claims could be the real killer.

Yang was convicted in 2011 of killing Reuter and her unborn child in what prosecutors called a “ongoing, jealous rage and obsession” over former Bear Shaun Gayle. Gayle had dated both women.

The judge also ordered the State to turn over the original VHS tape from the barber Gayle visited the day of the murder. Yang’s attorneys want the tape to challenge his alibi.

“There is surveillance video from the barber shop, and we are going to take a look at that and that ought to answer the question as to when he arrived and with whom he arrived,” Stone said. “I want to know that information in our quest for the truth.”

This latest effort to overturn Yang’s conviction is being funded by her father. She is currently serving a double-life sentence at the Dwight Correctional Facility.

"The fact that the judge allowed the subpoenas to go forward today, will help unearth what’s been going on," Larry Merar said.

Late Wednesday night, the Lake County States Attorney’s office filed a motion to dismiss Yang’s petition for a new trial. They say the Defendant’s “entire petition is a skillful lawyerly rebranding of the facts and the overwhelming evidence against her.”

They say the “fatal flaw” in Yang’s petition is the timeline. They say the confession she made to friend Christi Paschen, who was wearing a wire matched the account Paschen had provided police two days earlier.

Their motion goes on to state: “the only way Christi Paschen could have provided the same account to police that the Defendant later recites is if the Defendant had previously divulged this to her.”

The judge is expected to rule on that motion to dismiss in a couple of months.

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