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Judge Will Issue Written Opinion On William Curl Plea Withdrawal

The man who pleaded guilty to murdering Northern Illinois University student Toni Keller in 2010 will have to wait until next month to know if his petition to void that plea will be granted.

William Curl’s lawyer says Curl was not in his right mind during police interviews. He says Curl claimed he smoked the psychedelic plant salvia before those interviews and says Curl's responses should have been suppressed because of that.

The prosecution says Curl was coherent during all of the interviews and argues "mentally ill" doesn’t necessarily mean unfit for questioning or trial.

“We hope that a decision will be truly thought through where, finally, this can be put in a place where they can recover and start to heal,” Mary Tarling, Toni Keller’s cousin, said.

Tarling was at the hearing, along with Keller’s parents. Keller's mother, Diane, says she and her husband have been suffering for seven years and will continue to suffer for the rest of their lives.

“Every time this is brought up like this again, it rips the wound open again," Tarling said. "And we understand the process – we respect the process – but at some point, there has to be some humaneness to it for the victim’s family.”

A DeKalb County judge will issue a written opinion in court on Oct. 6.

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