Effingham Daily News, Effingham, IL

March 3, 2014

Church receives new attorney

Bill Grimes
Effingham Daily News

EFFINGHAM — One of the two men suspected of contributing to last month's fatal heroin overdose of an Effingham woman has a new attorney.

During a brief Monday morning hearing in Effingham County Circuit Court, Judge J. Marc Kelly appointed Effingham attorney Bill Totten to represent Albert D. Church of Effingham, who is charged with delivery of a controlled substance under the legal theory of accountability. Church, 23, has been in jail since his Feb. 12 arrest. He and co-defendant Jay C. Miller, 22, are suspected of helping Jessica James receive heroin on Feb. 4 that led to a fatal overdose. James was pronounced dead on Feb. 5.

Kelly told Church Monday that his original court-appointed attorney, Richard Runde, was still hospitalized, and gave the defendant the option of waiting for Runde's recovery or obtaining new counsel.

Church opted to have a new attorney appointed. Kelly set the defendant's next court appearance for 11 a.m. March 10.

Bill Grimes can be reached at 217-347-7151, ext. 132, at bill.grimes@effinghamdailynews.com, or via Twitter @EDNBGrimes