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Depner gets a trial date for his latest DUI

WOODSTOCK – A former McHenry man who was sentenced to 14 years in prison for killing a woman and her three children in a 1999 drunken-driving crash received a trial date Friday for his latest arrest for driving under the influence.

Walter J. Depner, 61, of Mount Prospect, was charged in February with driving under the influence of alcohol and the anti-anxiety drug clonazepam, for which prosecutors say he did not have a prescription. He was also driving on a revoked license.

After the crash, while deputies were en route, Depner pulled his car into a nearby driveway, let himself into the home and sat down on the couch.

Depner’s trial is set for Feb. 3.

In August 1999, Depner was driving under the influence of alcohol when he struck and killed Eva Burleson, 34, and her three children, Daniel, 13; Tiffany, 11; and Dallis, 7. The family dog was also killed in the crash. Thomas Burleson, the father and husband, survived the crash.

In 2003, Depner was sentenced to 14 years in prison, and he was released on parole in June 2011.

For Depner’s latest trial, the defense plans to call a medical professional as an expert witness, but defense attorney Mark Facchini would not comment on what specifically the expert would testify about.

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