Lake County Circuit Court proceedings in the theft case against Melodie Gliniewicz are on hold as a state Appellate Court considers an appeal on a pretrial ruling that texts between Gliniewicz and her late husband, former Fox Lake police Lt. Joe Gliniewicz, cannot be introduced at trial.
In a brief hearing Monday morning, Lake County Circuit Judge James Booras said he would schedule no further pretrial hearings until the appeal on the ruling is finalized.
After the hearing, Assistant State's Attorney Scott Turk said both appellate prosecutors and the defense still have the opportunity to file briefs in the appellate case, and it could potentially be months before the appeal is resolved and the case moves back to Lake County jurisdiction.
Prosecutors claim that Melodie Gliniewicz participated in her husband's alleged scheme to siphon money from the Fox Lake Police Explorer youth policing program he ran to use for personal expenses such as meals and expenses.
Joe Gliniewicz shot himself to death in 2015, as it appeared his alleged theft was about to be exposed to village officials, authorities said. He died in a remote area of Fox Lake after reporting to a police dispatcher that he was chasing three suspects on foot, prompting a massive police search.
After an outpouring of condolences and a hero's funeral, investigators determined he staged his suicide to look like a line-of-duty death.
Months later, in January 2016, Melodie Gliniewicz was charged with money laundering, misuse of charitable funds and conspiracy.
The ruling in question at the Appellate Court level involves whether texts and emails exchanged between Melodie Gliniewicz and her late husband can be used as evidence in her trial. Booras ruled that they cannot due to protections under marital privilege laws.
The Lake County State's Attorney's Office then appealed that ruling to the state level.