Deters determined to have role in Franklin prosecution

Friday, September 25, 1998

BY DAN HORN
The Cincinnati Enquirer

Hamilton County Prosecutor Joseph Deters wants to personally handle the murder trial of convicted serial killer Joseph Paul Franklin.

The trial, to begin Oct. 19, falls just two weeks before the final day of Mr. Deters' campaign for Ohio treasurer.

Mr. Deters said Thursday he is interested in the high-profile case because his office has pursued charges against Mr. Franklin for more than a year, not because it will generate media coverage. If anything, he said, his involvement in the trial would hurt his campaign because it could require him to remain in Cincinnati instead of traveling around the state.

"The last thing my campaign needs to do is get involved in a murder trial," Mr. Deters said. "This case touched me a great deal. If I have a chance to try it, I want to do it."

He said a decision Thursday to delay the trial, originally set for Oct. 5, greatly improved his chances of working on the case. Even so, he said, his schedule could still be too hectic to allow it.

Common Pleas Judge Ralph Winkler granted the postponement after meeting with prosecutors and defense attorneys Thursday. The judge said both sides agreed to the delay.

"I've been involved intimately in the scheduling of this," Mr. Deters said. "It's much more probable I can try it on the 19th."

Mr. Franklin, who is linked to as many as 18 racially motivated murders around the country, is charged with the 1980 shooting deaths of two teen-age cousins in Bond Hill. Prosecutors say he used a high-powered rifle to kill Dante Evans Brown and Darrell Lane as they walked to a grocery store.

The charges against Mr. Franklin were filed last year after assistant county prosecutor Melissa Powers got a statement from Mr. Franklin linking him to the crime.

Although Mr. Franklin already is on death row in other states, Mr. Deters has said it is important to try him in Cincinnati because the victims' families want to see justice done.

Mr. Franklin could not face a death sentence here because Ohio did not have the death penalty in 1980.



Local Headlines For Friday, September 25, 1998

CLINTON - STARR COVERAGE
"Average Joe' robs 4th bank
"Super school' unpopular with parents
'Dead Man Walking' hard for Morris to watch
Buddy up to "Buddy Faro' and 'Two of a Kind'
CAMPAIGN NOTEBOOK
Candidate sues after bus ad refused
Cathedral Fest spotlights art
City left policeman's widow with the bills
City's high schools targeted
Civil Rights' Shining Light
Coach made deal to escape charges
Deters determined to have role in Franklin prosecution
Elections panel: Dems can keep union money
Former Enquirer reporter guilty
Four-party debate too much for Fisher
From nightmare to forgiveness
Health coverage restored for 800
Imperiled Explorers troop bounces back
Judge dismisses sex harrassment case against The Precinct
Kentucky Dems hit hard by scandals
Miss Ohio keeps title
New approach urged on student problems
NKU realigns administration
NKU, professor appeal sex harassment case
Patton linked to indictments
Prisoner had to give himself insulin
Shutdown of FWW brings crackdown
Strike 2 for new landfill
Student's attacker gets 6 years
Sycamore bond issue under fire
TRISTATE DIGEST
Tristate ordered to clean air
Wilkinsons to headline ChiliFest
Wyoming seeks volunteer Webmaster