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Steven Zelich waives preliminary hearing in Kenosha County Friday

KENOSHA, WI (WTAQ) - Former West Allis police officer Steven Zelich waived his preliminary hearing Friday in one of two homicide cases he's facing in Wisconsin and Minnesota.

The 52-year-old Zelich was ordered to stand trial in Kenosha County for the 2012 death of 19-year-old Jenny Gamez of Cottage Grove Oregon. He's scheduled to enter pleas Monday to charges of first-degree intentional homicide and hiding a corpse.

Authorities said both Gamez and Laura Simonson of Farmington Minnesota died after erotic choking games. Their bodies were found June 5th in separate suitcases tossed along a grassy road near Lake Geneva.

The defense asked for a new judge to hear the Kenosha case. Circuit Judge Bruce Schroeder was named to replace Chad Kerkman.

Criminal defendants in Wisconsin are allowed to have one judicial substitution without having a give a reason.

Zelich also has a status conference scheduled September 23rd for his Walworth County case involving two counts of hiding a corpse.

Charges involving Simonson's death will be heard in Minnesota.  

(Story courtesy of Wheeler News Service)