Murder victim’s family says they hope trial starts soon for man waiting in jail since 2007

WGN Investigates

Alex Daniel, 57, was charged with his wife’s murder but has been waiting since 2007 for a trial. Now the victim’s family is speaking up and says they hope a trial starts soon.

Daniel was booked in 2007 for the murder of his wife Brenda Daniel. During that time, his case has had 129 continuances and 12 judges. He’s also on his third public defender.

He pleaded not guilty but has never had a trial, a jury or a conviction for that murder. He could be the longest standing case not brought to trial in Cook County.

What has caused the slowdown? That’s unclear. The Public Defender’s Office and State’s Attorney’s Office denied requests for an interview, they did allude to the possibility of Daniel slowing down the process by firing a public defender each time the case gets close to trial.

“There’s no excuse for a case going this long, there isn’t any," Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart said.

WGN Investigates also asked Daniel about the claims. He said, “Well, I mean that’s what they want to do, they want to shift the blame. If I could be responsible for the length of time, I would be gone in 18 months.”

Daniel heads back to court May 24. It’s expected that trial date will be set at that hearing.