An attorney for a former Lawrence church youth leader who was awarded a new trial by an appellate court plans to ask a Douglas County judge to dismiss the case entirely.
Hatem Chahine, appointed counsel for Christopher Cormack, told District Judge Robert Fairchild in court Monday he was working on a motion for dismissal based on the state’s statute of limitations.
A jury in 2008 convicted Cormack, a one-time youth ministry coordinator at Trinity Lutheran Church, on one count of aggravated indecent liberties with a child for having a sexual relationship with an underage girl. The girl testified the relationship lasted for more than two years beginning in 1999 when she was 15 and Cormack was 28.
A Kansas Court of Appeals panel earlier this year ruled Cormack deserved a new trial because the jury instructions did not require jurors to unanimously agree on a specific instance when Cormack may have had sexual intercourse with the girl when she was still 15.
Chahine said Monday he was still doing research but that he believed the charges should have been filed in the case by 2006 or within five years of when the last alleged criminal act occurred.
At trial Cormack admitted to having intercourse with the girl but said all the acts occurred after she was 16. The girl came forward with allegations several years later when she heard Cormack was returning to Kansas to become a pastor. Prosecutors filed charges in 2008.
The two sides are expected to argue the motion June 28, and Fairchild also scheduled a new trial date for Sept. 6. Cormack remains free on bond.