MUSKEGON, MICH. - The man who's serving a life prison sentence for the death of Muskegon County mother Rebekah Bletsch is scheduled to go to trial for the death of store clerk Jessica Heeringa in March.
However, a new motion filed in the case could delay the trial for weeks, if not months.
Jeffrey Willis has begun serving a life prison sentence. He's currently being held at the state prison in Jackson.
This week, Willis' attorney Fred Johnson filed a "motion to adjourn" with the Muskegon County Circuit Court.
The motion may delay the trial scheduled to begin on March 6.
Johnson says he and other attorneys at the public defenders office have too much to review before trial. Johnson is also waiting for transcripts from Willis' first trial.
"We will be asking the judge for a little more time to make sure that we are ready to go," said Johnson.
Muskegon County Judge Marietti is being asked to give the defense team more time to prepare to defend Willis against charges of kidnapping and open murder for the death of store clerk Jessica Heeringa.
Johnson says because Willis is now in prison, it's more difficult to communicate with him.
"We did see him on Friday, but it's just inadequate," said Johnson. "We're not allowed to take files in, we're not allowed to take computers in, or to make phone calls."
The defense has asked the Michigan Department of Corrections to place Willis at a facility in Muskegon. Johnson believes the D.O.C. may make that decision this month.
Muskegon County Prosecutor D.J. Hilson say he opposes the motion, will ask the judge to deny it, and he'll continue preparing for the trial to start in March.
Judge Marietti will hear the motion on Jan. 26 at 10 a.m.
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