Date still not set for Wall trial

Posted at 9:47 PM, Mar 24, 2014
and last updated 2014-03-24 23:47:14-04

SALT LAKE CITY -- A Salt Lake City doctor is accused of killing his ex-wife.

Now, almost a year after his arrest, lawyers are in a battle before the case goes to trial.

The defense wants a key interview with police thrown out. Meanwhile, prosecutors want one of the lawyers representing Dr. John Wall dismissed from the case.

"I don't think I should be disqualified,” said defense attorney Howard Lundgren. “I don't think there's a legal basis for it."

Howard Lundgren was the doctor’s lawyer before allegations emerged that Wall murdered his ex-wife Uta Von Schwedler in September 2011.

Prosecutors say Wall hated Schwedler, angry after a bitter divorce and custody battle. They want Lundgren disqualified so that he can testify in the murder case so prosecutors can try and find out what he knows.

"There had been a stipulation there was going to be a custody evaluation and they're saying Howard was a witness to that," said defense attorney Fred Metos. For now, the decision whether to dismiss Lundgren has been put on hold.

Meanwhile, the defense is trying to throw out Wall's entire interview with Salt Lake City police. Defense Metos thinks the officers used questionable tactics.

”Some of that came out at the preliminary hearing in terms of them misrepresenting facts and out manufacturing facts to get Dr. Wall to confess to this," Metos said.

Five witnesses testified Monday. None of them said Wall complained of being threatened or coerced by police but lawyers still have to question the detectives who did the interview.

A family friend took the stand Monday afternoon. Andrea Brickey told the court about a conversation she had with Wall after his police interrogation.

"I just said (to Wall) do you think you did this in your heart of hearts? And he said 'I don't remember,’” Brickey testified.

While at Wall’s home, Brickey said Wall acted strange following the death of his ex-wife and suspected he was suicidal.

"He was afraid he might jump out of the window," she said Wall stated.

Brickey called a friend, a therapist, who described more odd behavior as she drove Wall to the hospital two years ago.

"He started telling me that his mother was psychotic and he was wondering if he had what she had and at that time I said shut up, I didn't want him to talk to me anymore. I was… I was afraid," said Jill Alger-James

Wall sat emotionless in court Monday but behind it all, his lawyers say he's frustrated the case is dragging.

These motions will take at least another month to resolve before a trial date is scheduled.