Thursday, November 18, 2004
Shooting Case Set for Trial
A Carmel Valley attempted murder case has been set for trial on Feb. 7 in Salinas by Superior Court Judge Lydia Villarreal.
The District Attorney’s Office has charged Ilona Leidig of trying to kill her then-husband Ted Leidig on Feb. 20, 2004 at their Carmel Valley home. The formal charge of attempted pre-mediated murder carries several enhancements for use of a firearm and other factors.
Ilona Leidig is alleged to have shot Ted Leidig, co-owner of several Carmel restaurants, with a snub-nosed .357 magnum revolver.
At a preliminary hearing in May, a county deputy testified that Leidig had told him that he was shot once in the chest while retrieving a belt from his closet. According to the same testimony, law enforcement had been called to the house the night before for a “verbal” domestic disturbance.
Defense attorney Richard Rosen said in court this week that his client will testify that “she acted in self-defense.”
At the hearing, Rosen called a Stanford psychiatrist to testify about bipolar disorder under the defense contention that there’s evidence Ted Leidig suffers from the condition. Deputy district attorney Angela McNulty argued against Rosen’s contention, saying such a “label” is meant to “create a sensation.”
Judge Villarreal said she would consider the arguments and whether such a condition could be mentioned at trial and whether or not a psychiatrist would be allowed to testify. [AS]
Friends of Skyler to Party
Skyler Russell has Cerebral Palsy, a medical condition that inhibits the nerves that control movement and dexterity. Now three, Skyler has had to undergo long and difficult therapy in hopes that someday he can walk without a cane.
Three weeks ago, that hope neared reality when Skyler took his first independent steps, an astounding development as less than two months earlier he was confined to braces and a walker. This sudden progress is the result of a therapeutic method devised by Anat Baniel, a San Rafael doctor.
“My husband and I were in tears watching him walk,” says Skyler’s mother, Jill Russell. Skyler now walks with a cane, and his feet align naturally, a problem the braces couldn’t fix.
The Baniel method isn’t cheap: The Russells have been paying $18,000 a year. To cover therapy, the community around the family has put together a fund raising party, set for this Sunday.
“People see Skyler and they feel for him,” says Russell, “they want to help.”
See Hot Picks section, for details. [BG]