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Judge Hunter opts out of road rage case

Published: Sat, October 26, 2013 @ 12:09 a.m.

Judge Hunter recuses himself from John Dellick's case

County Court Judge Scott Hunter recused himself from the case involving Juvenile Court Judge Theresa Dellick’s son

By Kalea Hall



Mahoning County Court Judge Scott Hunter has recused himself from a case against John Dellick, son of Juvenile Court Judge Theresa Dellick.

Judge Hunter excused himself in accordance with the Judicial Canons of Ethics. A docket entry Friday shows that he requested the case be referred to the county courts’ presiding judge, Joseph M. Houser, for assignment.

John Dellick is charged with aggravated assault, a fourth-degree felony, after a road-rage incident last Friday.

Judge Hunter did not recuse himself from Dellick’s arraignment Tuesday in Canfield court, where he presides.

Angelo Gomez, 58, of Boardman told Mahoning County sheriff’s deputies that he saw Dellick throw a bottle out the window of his silver Jeep while stopped at a light at U.S. Route 224 and Lockwood Boulevard.

Gomez said he yelled at Dellick for littering and then Dellick made an inappropriate hand gesture toward him. Dellick then began repeat- edly braking in an effort to get Gomez to hit his Jeep, according to a police report. After Gomez passed Dellick, Dellick’s Jeep rear-ended Gomez’s car.

When both men got out of their vehicles, Dellick began to yell racial slurs toward Gomez and his wife and questioned the couple’s citizenship, as they are Hispanic, according to a police report.

Dellick was arrested and taken to the Mahoning County jail. He was released after posting a $2,500 bond last Saturday morning. His preliminary hearing will be at 11 a.m. Nov. 22 in Canfield court. Mahoning County Prosecutor Paul Gains said a special prosecutor may be sought for the case to avoid the appearance of impropriety.

Dellick’s mother issued a statement Monday supporting her son’s innocence and arguing against the claim that her son made racial comments, since he has Hispanic heritage.

It recently was discovered there were two other road-rage incidents John Dellick was involved in, but was never charged.

In June 2012, Paul Jones, 22, of Youngstown said a silver Jeep attempted to cut him off while driving down Mahoning Avenue in Austintown. Dellick, identified in an Austintown police report as the driver of the vehicle, told Jones to pull over. Jones pulled into the Sun Merchant gas station on Mahoning Avenue and Dellick followed. When both men got out of their vehicles, they began to argue and then the fight became physical. A gas station employee broke them up.

After the fight ended, Jones discovered two stab wounds on his back, the police report said. One nearly hit his lungs, and the other tore through muscle and tissue.

Dellick also had injuries including a black eye, cut hand and a scratch on his face. The report said Dellick refused to give a statement or answer questions.

The prosecutor said there were too many conflicting statements to prosecute Dellick.

In a January incident in Boardman, a Poland man claimed a silver Jeep pulled out in front of him, swerved between the lanes and attempted to cut the driver off. While stopped at a light on Route 224, Dellick, the driver of the Jeep, damaged the man’s car by kicking the side-view mirror, after the man would not get out of his car when Dellick asked, according to a police report.

When the driver followed Dellick to get his license-plate number, Dellick struck his car. Even though the report was filed, the driver decided not to press charges against Dellick, according to the report.

Dellick’s attorney, Samuel Amendolara, would not comment earlier this week on the Austintown or Boardman incidents.

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