HEPPNER - A lawyer for Araceli Velasquez-Espain, a woman facing multiple charges for the death of her infant son in Morrow County, has asked to have Circuit Court Judge Christopher Brauer disqualified from hearing her case. Gordon Mallon, a court-appointed lawyer based in Burns, filed an affidavit at the Heppner courthouse Tuesday that alleges Velasquez-Espain cannot receive a fair or impartial trial or hearing before Judge Brauer. The affidavit does not give any details; Mallon said that defendants are allowed two "affidavits of prejudice" without having to state a reason.
Mallon said the state will next appoint another judge to the case, after which Velasquez-Espain's lawyers and the Morrow County District Attorney will set a date for her next hearing.
- Erin Mills