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New Lenox Soldier May Represent Self at Murder Trial

New Lenox soldier Jason Gonzalez had represented himself in his murder case before agreeing to take on a lawyer, but may return to going it alone.

Jason Gonzalez. Credit: Will County Sheriff's Department
Jason Gonzalez. Credit: Will County Sheriff's Department
A New Lenox soldier charged with killing his uncle may represent himself at his murder trial.

Jason Gonzalez, 27, has until Friday to decide whether to accept the services of an attorney or to go it alone. Gonzalez's trial is scheduled to start Oct. 21.

Gonzalez has been jailed more than four years on charges he murdered his uncle Lance Goebel in September 2009. Gonzalez allegedly shot Goebel numerous times with a 9-mm handgun, then stole $1,000 and his uncle's Chevy HHR. The vehicle was later located about a mile from Goebel's residence in New Lenox Township.

Goebel's wife found her husband dead in the home. Several days later, the police caught Gonzalez sleeping in his mother's 1997 Saturn, which he reportedly borrowed from her shortly before the killing. Gonzalez was parked behind a bush on Larkin Avenue in Joliet, police said.

Gonzalez had lived with Goebel but his uncle kicked him out not long before the murder, police said. In between his departure from his uncle's home and the killing, Gonzalez sent an email to an aunt living in Seattle and told her he was going to "get even" with Goebel, according to court papers.

Gonzalez was stationed in Guantanamo Bay during his eight months in the Army in 2005 and 2006. His time in the military was cut short when he was discharged for medical reasons, according to a filing which claimed Gonzalez was "given a diagnosis of personality disorder with passive aggressive and borderline features."

The filing also said that prior to his discharge, Gonzalez suffered from "major depressive disorder, moderate severe, single episode, though complicated by longer-standing personality traits."

Gonzalez had been representing himself during pretrial matters but agreed to be defended by an attorney. When he was told Monday that if he agreed to let a lawyer represent him that he would have to turn over the evidence he has been allowed to possess in jail, Gonzalez balked, according to court records.

He must make his decision about parting with the evidence during a hearing Friday, according to court records.

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Dan October 03, 2013 at 08:15 AM
our government does nothing for the mentally ill,but sound like he had problems long before the army. with that in mine he''ll prob. use it in his trail,which i would not buy,cause i'm sure he knew right from wrong when he murdered his uncle.

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