Attorneys in the murder case against one of four men accused in the robbery and beating death of a Palos Township couple are still hashing out the details of allowing a doctor to testify about one of the defendant's mental state, the defense said Thursday.
Mohammed Salahat, 18, is charged with murder in the stabbing and beating death of John and Maria Granat, along with three alleged accomplices: Christopher Wyma, 18; Ehab Qasem, 20; and the couple's son, John Granat, 18.
Salahat has been described by prosecutors as the driver who remained in a car outside the home while the other three beat and stabbed the Granats to death in their bedroom on Sept. 11, 2011. His attorney, Joel Brodsky, has said previously that Salahat was "the fall guy" in the murders. However, prosecutors argue that Salahat was fully aware of what was happening inside the home.
The four have been in custody without bond since the incident. Hearings have taken place in Judge Neil Linehan's Bridgeview courtroom.
In a move that has temporarily separated Salahat from the others, Brodsky has filed several motions, including a still pending attempt to toss out the arrest of Salahat, who was 16 at the time of the murders.
Brodsky has also motion to get his client's bond lowered. Brodsky wants to introduce the psychological evaluation of a doctor; the attorney says will show that Salahat is not violent and "wouldn't be a danger to anyone and would be zero risk" if he were released.
"We're hoping [the testimony] of the doctor will make lowering of the bond a little more palatable to the judge," Brodsky told Patch in a phone interview Thursday.
Brodsky said results of the evaluation would show that Salahat has a nonviolent personality, but he attaches to groups and friends easily. If those friends end up being part of a "bad crowd," Brodsky said, Salahat will follow along.
But if Salahat is alone, away from those bad elements, he is not dangerous, Brodsky added.
Nevertheless, it is unknown when the doctor will be able to testify about his evaluation in open court. During a recent hearing, counsel disagreed on whether the doctor for the defense would be required to give documentation to a doctor for the prosecution, but not prosecutors themselves.
The next hearing date for Salahat on the issue is Dec. 16. All four defendants are scheduled to return to Linehan's courtroom on Nov. 27.