Advocates call for new, impartial judge in Theodore Edgecomb trial

NOW: Advocates call for new, impartial judge in Theodore Edgecomb trial

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Earlier this week, a judge ruled on several motions during a pre-trial hearing for Theodore Edgecomb. 

Edgecomb is accused of killing a Milwaukee attorney. He claims it was in self-defense. 

Now, some local groups are advocating for Edgecomb. They say the judge assigned to the case is unable to fairly conduct the trial. 

At points throughout the pre-trial, Judge David Borowski interrupted Edgecomb's defense attorney.

Liz Brown, with Justice Wisconsin, says that's just one action that shows the judge's bias against the defense. 

"I'm sitting in this courtroom, and if you watch the motions, you watch the judge bully this defense," said Brown. 

Brown says Judge David Borowski's rulings also make it clear he's prejudiced against the defense. 

"This judge has refused every motion of the defense, and blatantly," said Brown. "Those that he hasn't outright refused, he has tabled until the next meeting and then he just refuses them." 

Brown pointed to many of Judge Borowski's decisions, including his decision to allow the prosecution to use the word victim during the trial, and his decision not to allow an expert to take the stand for the defense about what's considered a threat and what's considered self-defense.

Brown says the judge's biases are based on the fact that Edgecomb is a Black man and that Jason Cleereman, the man he’s accused of killing, was a well-known attorney in Milwaukee. 

CBS 58 spoke to Julius Kim, a local defense lawyer and former prosecutor with Kim & Lavoy, S.C., about what he saw during the pre-trial hearing. 

"I haven't seen any rulings by Judge Borowski that seems out of the ordinary," said Kim. 

He said it's unlikely the judge is removed from the case, since he would have to recuse himself.

"It would have to come from Edgecomb's attorney, and basically they're going to have to allege that based upon their beliefs, different rulings and maybe even things Judge Borowski has said in and out of the court, that they don't think he can be fair anymore. But that's a high bar to meet and Judge Borowski himself has to make that determination," said Kim. 

Based on Judge Borowski's knowledge of the case and where they're at in the trial, Kim feels it's unlikely the judge will remove himself from the case. 

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