The case of Melodie Gliniewicz — widow of disgraced Fox Lake police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz and accused of aiding his scheme to steal thousands from a youth organization — took a detour this week to the Illinois Second District Appellate Court in Elgin, where justices were asked to decide whether texts and emails between the couple could be used against her at trial.
Gliniewicz, 54, of Antioch Township, faces charges of unlawful use of charitable funds, conspiracy and money laundering. Her husband killed himself in September 2015, when it appeared his thefts were going to be revealed, and attempted to make it appear that he was killed in the line of duty.
A Lake County judge previously ruled the communications inadmissible, saying they were protected by the state’s marital privilege laws.
But appellate prosecutor Richard London argued before the appellate court this week that Melodie Gliniewicz waived that privilege when she gave authorities her cellphone during the investigation of her husband’s death. Gliniewicz attorney Donald Morrison said she couldn’t have waived the privilege because she didn’t know exactly what investigators would find on the phone.
“Whether she consented or not, she didn’t know what the (phone’s) content was,” Morrison argued. “She doesn’t know what she waived.”
Gliniewicz’s trial has been put on hold while the marital privilege issue is up on appeal. Justices did not indicate when they would rule..