After eight year, the nephew of former Mayor Richard Daley was indicted Monday and faces a manslaughter charge after a drunken confrontation on a Chicago street in 2004.
David Koschman had slipped into a coma 11 days before he died, after a fight near Dearborn and Division in 2004.
Long suspected of throwing a fatal punch was Richard J Vanecko, now 38, grandson of Richard J. Daley and nephew of then-mayor Richard M. Daley.
Among the questions a special prosecutor was asked to answer, whether clout tainted the investigation.
“I think that the failures to properly investigate and to indict eight years ago speak volumes about the inadequacies of that investigation,” Flint Taylor, the Koschman family attorney said.
In the indictment charging Vanecko with involuntary manslaughter, a grand jury says, he, “through the use of physical force, and without lawful justification, recklessly performed acts which were likely to cause death or great bodily harm.”
The indictment was handed-up the same day State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez, criticized for her handling of the file, was sworn in for a historic second term.
“I know I did what I was supposed to do as Cook County State’s Attorney in looking at this case,” she said. “Maybe it got lost in translation, but I was the only one who actually asked for an independent investigator to look at this case.”
In fact, Alvarez said for the first time Monday that her office convened its own grand jury; an investigation she says was cut short by the appointment of a special prosecutor.
And Richard Vanecko’s defense team released a statement pointing out the case was investigated multiple times by police and prosecutors. It reads “Each time (they say), the Chicago Police Department and the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office declined to bring criminal charges. These decisions were not because of favoritism, but because the facts did not warrant felony charges.”
Vanecko currently lives in California. He’s expected to be arraigned in Chicago first thing next Monday morning, then released on $10,000 dollars bond to await his trial.