Trial of murder suspect Joseph Thomas set for April 10
Thomas faces death penalty for the aggravated murder, rape and kidnapping of Annie McSween
The trial of Joseph Thomas, the man accused of murdering bartender Annie McSween, is scheduled for April 10 in Lake County Court of Common Pleas in Painesville.
Thomas, 26, pleaded not guilty in October to 11 felony charges, including aggravated murder, rape, kidnapping, tampering with evidence and aggravated robbery. He faces the death penalty.
Thomas appeared before Lake County Common Pleas Judge Richard L. Collins Jr. Monday for his first pretrial hearing to set a date for the trial and to review other legal proceedings that are expected to occur over the next four months. Thomas agreed to waive his right to a speedy trial.
Annie McSween, 49, of Mentor, was found murdered on Nov. 26, 2010 near Mario's Lakeway Lounge on Andrews Road.
McSween had tended bar at Lakeway Lounge the night she was murdered. She closed the bar, but never made it home.
Her body was found behind the house at 5612 Andrews Road, next to the bar, at 8:39 a.m. She had been beaten, strangled and repeatedly stabbed, Lake County Deputy Coroner Dr. Mark Komar said. She likely bled to death.
Thomas was identified as someone who used to be a regular patron at the bar.
According to various court documents, Thomas frequently changed addresses. He has lived in Madison Township, Perry Township and Fairport Harbor.
Thomas also used to live in Mentor-on-the-Lake, according to an arrest record from 2007.
Police arrested Thomas from the home where he was living on the 1300 block of Oldsmar Avenue in Madison Township.