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Former Episcopal Bishop Trial Postponed Until September

BALTIMORE (WJZ) --Heather Cook, the former episcopal bishop accused of driving under the influence and killing a local cyclist in December was set to face a judge Thursday morning, but instead the trial was postponed.

Amy Yensi has details from the courthouse.

Cook and her attorneys asked the judge for a postponement, citing a need for further investigation.

Now they have a little more time before her fate is decided.

"We're still doing our due diligence on the case," said Cook's attorney David Irwin. "We're not ready for resolution of it at this time."

The first female bishop of the Episcopal church in Maryland, Cook was charged in the death of cyclist Tom Palermo. Outside District Couty, Palermo's sister-in-law expressed disappointment that Cook has yer to pay for what she did.

"The prosecutor told us to expect a postponement," Alisa Rock said, "but it's still disappointing that the trial did not start today."

Prosecutors say Cook was driving drunk on Roland Avenue when she struck and killed Palermo back in December. She was arraigned in April and pleaded not guilty on all 13 charges against her for striking Palermo and fleeing the scene.

On Thursday, she waived her right to a speedy trial and was granted a postponement.

"Plea negotiations wouldn't be the right term," Irwin said. "The earliest for plea considerations the state and I have talked about."

Though she did not speak to reporters, Cook's attorney says his client has been getting alcohol abuse treatment.

"My client is in continuing treatment," he added.

Cook and her defense team are due back in court on Sept. 9.

Following the hit and run, Cook resigned her post and was banned by the national church from acting as an ordained person.


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