More Wierdness in Mack Trial


Yes, more wierdness in a case that's had it's share.

First, Mack stabs his wife to death and shoots a judge (always the best way to endear oneself to the legal community about to determine your fate).

Darren Mack flees, he's talked into coming back by the D.A. (of all people).

Darren Mack pleads guilty (before putting on a defense); now he's changed his mind, fired attorney Scott Freeman (Mack will have a hard time if he wants to claim ineffective assistance) and hired Laub and Laub.

What's wrong with this guy?

According to Martha Bellisle, writing for the Reno Gazette today, Mack dropped his legal defense team after pleading guilty to murder and attempted murder charges, and plans to file a motion to withdraw his guilty pleas, a source close to his family said Thursday.

The withdrawal motion has yet to be filed but was in the process of being crafted, the source said.

As of Wednesday, Scott Freeman, one of Mack's trial lawyers, had signed the substitution request but David Chesnoff had not.

William Routsis, a lawyer with the Reno firm of Laub and Laub, was to take over the case, the source said.

In a surprise move, Mack, 46, stopped his murder trail on Nov. 5, just as his lawyers were about to present the defense case and agreed to plead guilty to first-degree murder of his estranged wife, Charla, 39.

She was found stabbed to death in the garage of his upscale townhouse on June 14, 2006.

Mack also entered a conditional guilty plea on the attempted murder charge in the sniper-style shooting of their divorce judge, Chuck Weller.

Under the plea, Mack said he did not intend to kill the judge but acknowledged that the prosecution had enough evidence to convict him.

Neither Freeman nor Chesnoff could be reached for comment late Thursday. Special Prosecutor Robert Daskas also did not return phone messages.

Judge Douglas Herndon had scheduled sentencing Jan. 17-18 in Las Vegas, where he moved the trial after determining an impartial jury could not be found in Washoe County.

Mack faces life in prison with the possibility of parole after

20 years on the murder charge.