County sets Ditzler trial for July

County sets Ditzler trial for July

By Joe Baker

By Joe Baker

Senior Editor

Claiming a crowded docket, Associate Circuit Judge Brian Shore set Tuesday, July 23 for the trial of misdemeanor charges against Christina Ditzler and Jessie Crow.

The date will be nearly one year since the two young women were arrested on the Ditzler property. They were charged with battery.

Ditzler and Crow were accused of smearing mud on a deputy sheriff’s uniform. The two said they were putting the mud on trees on the Ditzler property in order to clog chain saws being used to fell the trees.

At the time of the incident, the Ditzlers had not been to court, and Gov. George Ryan had declared “Enjoy your land.”

When the workmen employed by the county came on the site early that morning and began cutting trees, the two women rushed out in an effort to save the ancient oaks and other trees. Their arrests followed.

In court Tuesday, the state’s attorney’s office offered a deal: plead guilty to the charges, and we’ll give you one year’s probation. The women declined that proposal because it would require a guilty plea. They have requested a jury trial.

When their lawyer asked why the trial was set so far in the year, the judge stated the courts can’t get to it any sooner.

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