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Judge recuses himself from drowning death suit

Published: Thursday, Feb. 7, 2013 5:04 p.m. CST • Updated: Friday, Feb. 8, 2013 6:43 a.m. CST

GENEVA – The lawsuit filed by the family of a man who drowned in the Fox River has a new judge and a court date after a status hearing Thursday.

The suit was filed against the city in May by William Suchy, the brother of Randy Suchy, 57, of Bolingbrook. Randy Suchy drowned Aug. 5, 2011, after jumping into the river to save a 12-year-old boy near the Geneva Dam. The suit claims the city did not have proper safety measures, such as warning signs and rescue equipment.

The boy survived, but Suchy died from his injuries at Delnor Hospital in Geneva.

The suit seeks more than $50,000 in damages. Attorneys for Geneva and the Geneva Park District previously filed papers asking that the case be dismissed because they cannot control the Fox River.

The case went before Judge James R. Murphy Thursday, and it is scheduled to continue before Judge Edward C. Schreiber, according to court records. On Thursday, Murphy disclosed that he had a friendship and previously shared clients with one of the defense attorneys. He then recused himself.

Murphy could have heard the case if all parties agreed to waive his recusal, but at least one attorney objected.

The next court date is March 21.

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