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District Attorney Hopeful For New Judge To Oversee Beta Theta Pi Hearings

When Stacy Parks Miller announced the new charges in the Beta Theta Pi case related to Tim Piazza’s death, the Centre County District Attorney seemed confident that this time around, the charges will stick — unlike in the preliminary hearing when the most serious charges were bound over.

While some argued that she went for too much with the initial charges of the 18 individuals, which is why it’s believed that Judge Allen Sinclair dismissed the felonies in September, Parks Miller described the result of the preliminary hearings as “an error of law” and refiled the charges two weeks ago, then added to the list of charges Monday.

“I didn’t come here today to insult the prior judge, but we claimed error of law and we wouldn’t have refiled if we didn’t think [the charges] were 100 percent legitimate,” Parks Miller said during her press conference.

Her goal moving forward is to get the case, which has “fallen off the rails” in terms of scheduling, back on track.

When she refiled the charges, Parks Miller made it clear that another one of the District Judges, Steven Lachman, should not be involved in the case moving forward — pointing to his previous involvement with the university, his criticism of law enforcement, and that he “openly advocates for student defendants” as reasons for why he’s unfit to oversee future hearings.

The District Attorney filed a motion for “Reassignment to a Magisterial District Justice other than Magisterial District Justice Lachman.” Carmine Prestia, Kelley Gillette-Walker or Thomas Jordan would be the other available District Judges to oversee the case.

Whether this move succeeds or not will be interesting to see, but she does have quite a few statements to back up her claim. You can check out the entire motion below:

About the Author

Gabriela Stevenson

Gabriela is a junior majoring in print and digital journalism and Onward State's student life editor. She is from Norristown, PA, which she normally refers to as "30 minutes outside of Philadelphia" (she looked up the exact driving time). She enjoys Broadway musicals, neck pillows, and eating cereal at night. To contact Gabriela, e-mail her at [email protected], or follow her on Twitter @GabiStevenson if you want to feel young again.

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