MT. VERNON — A Mt. Vernon attorney has been appointed to serve as an associate judge in the Second Judicial Circuit.
Jerry Crisel was named to the position on Monday, according to an announcement from Chief Judge Stephen Sawyer. The judges of the Second Circuit elected Crisel from among more than a dozen candidates, according to the chief judge. Crisel begins his new duties on Oct. 15.
Crisel is a native of Edwards County, and currently serves as public defender in both Edwards and White counties. He is also a former Edwards County state’s attorney.
Crisel has been involved in a number of Jefferson County cases, and was appointed to represent murder suspect Mark A. Taylor. Taylor, 21, is one of four suspects accused in the shooting death of American Cab driver Charles Ellis in May 2011. Taylor is scheduled for a status hearing on Oct. 17. In the latest development in the case, Crisel asked the court and was granted a motion for a psychiatric examination of his client to determine his fitness. Judge David Overstreet appointed Dr. Angeline Stanislaus to conduct the fitness hearing.
During that hearing, Crisel argued Taylor had been diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder and the defendant witnessed one of his parents murdered by the other. Taylor also had an experience as a child in which a playmate was killed when a gun discharged.
“I am happy for Mr. Crisel, but obviously this will cause a delay in the proceedings for Mr. Taylor,” said Jefferson County State’s Attorney Doug Hoffman on Tuesday.
Crisel is expected to withdraw as Taylor’s court-appointed attorney on the 17th.
The Register-News contacted Crisel for comment on his appointment, but he did not return our call before the newspaper’s deadline.