'Ashford House 5' Plead Not Guilty to 185 Charges

Five men accused of being among a group of about 18 who authorities say attacked diners at the Ashford House in May were arraigned Thursday, when they appeared before three different judges. In July, attorneys will ask a judge to reduce their bail.

After appearing before three different judges in Cook County Court Thursday,  each pleaded not guilty to 37 counts related to mob action, armed violence, aggravated battery and criminal damage to property. 

Cody Sutherlin, 23; Dylan Sutherlin, 20; Alex Stuck, 22; John Tucker, 26; and Jason Sutherlin, 33; all stood before judges; hands behind their backs and free of handcuffs. They'd all had their faces shaved and hair shorn leaving them looking markedly different from mug shots taken the day of their arrests.

The backs of their tan jumpsuits were each stamped in black with "D.O.C.," standing for "Department of Corrections," as all .

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The men, three of whom are brothers, are accused of being among a group of about 18 who police say stormed a family-owned restaurant on May 19, .

Defendants are said to be members of the  that included attackers wielding table legs, hammers, batons and nunchucks. 

"There's nothing more to be said other than that they pleaded not guilty and we intend to prove that," said defense attorney Aaron Goldstein, who is representing Jason Sutherlin.

The first court appearance Thursday was before Associate Judge John J. Hynes. He addressed five petitions filed by  asking for a substitution of judges. The petitions specified different Cook County judges whom attorneys said they believed should not hear the cases for various reasons they declined to specify.

"Each defendant has the right of one substitution," said defense attorney Brian Barrido, who is representing Dylan Sutherlin. "We were able to name five judges that we felt would not be fair and impartial in this case, under these circumstances."

He noted that all involved defense lawyers are "seasoned," having no less than a decade of experience working within the county. 

READ: Our extensive local coverage on the Ashford House Attack.

After a brief appearance before Presiding Judge Raymond L. Jagielski, the petitions were officially granted and the case was passed to Associate Judge Carmen K. Aguilar, who will be handling it going forward.

All five defendants waived readings of the charges during their arraignment and entered "not guilty" pleas. Assistant State's Attorney Debbie Lawler then presented attorneys with a preliminary stack of evidence, which included a DVD, and let them know "more will be coming."

As they did at a June 12 court appearance, prosecutors again asked for permission to collect DNA samples from each of the defendants and test it against some of the evidence police collected from . They include gloves and hats, shirts, spring-loaded weapons, pieces of broken wood and stains on the sidewalk.

The process of comparing DNA is also known as "consumption" because samples can only be tested once before being destroyed. Some attorneys argue that consumption violates the Constitutional right of due process. Aguilar didn't grant the state's motion. She wanted to give defense attorneys time to file any formal objections to the process, she said.

Goldstein said they must consider objecting if they intend to represent the five men well.

"(Prosecutors) believe they have evidence that contains DNA," he said. "When you use it all, that prevents us, the defense, from testing DNA ourselves … that could potentially exonerate our clients. … Whether we continue with our objection or not, I don't know."

Following their appearances Thursday, Barrido described the defendants as being "in good spirits." 

"They're still unified in terms of their defense and they're all adamantly pleading their innocence," he said, adding that his client, Dylan Sutherlin, is the youngest and smallest in stature of the five. "He's doing just fine. The other inmates are treating him well. They're not concerned for their safety at all."

Defense attorneys will file motions for bond reductions at the Five's next court appearance, which is scheduled for July 11 at 10:30 a.m.

"They cannot make bond and it's not easy being in jail," Goldstein said, citing challenges lawyers have faced meeting with defendants. "They're presumed innocent but they're stuck in jail. It makes things difficult."

A group of about 10 showed in court to support defendants. Some had shaggy hair or facial piercings. One wore a pair of black cut-off shorts with the word "violence" stitched in white to a back pocket. Another dressed in a T-shirt paired with a sport coat.

All shook their heads "no" when asked for their reaction to the day's proceedings.

Peruse our coverage so far on the Ashford House attack.

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Russ June 22, 2012 at 01:38 PM
Patch, I can't believe that comments like cingularman are allowed on this site.
Russ June 22, 2012 at 01:42 PM
Cingularman you and people like you that either act violently or wish violence on people to prove a point are the lowest form and most ignorant of all people.
Carrie Frillman June 22, 2012 at 02:21 PM
Wow, Cingularman. Another winning, productive comment. Your mother must be so proud. As I've told you so many times before, this violates our terms of use because your comment can be considered threatening—this time, to me. I really don't appreciate that so I encourage you to grow up or leave our site. Here's a refresher: http://tinleypark.patch.com/terms (again). This is your final warning from me before I ban you from commenting on Patch. Thanks for your understanding.
Ben Feldheim (Editor) June 22, 2012 at 02:38 PM
Antoine, I'm eager for an explanation myself. Any time you're ready.
Mighty God Allah June 22, 2012 at 02:39 PM
I notice that quite a few comments have been left by people from Stormfront. Uncle Penn in particular seems to have cut and pasted the same thing they have been posting in every comments section of every news report on this story.
Pro Con June 22, 2012 at 03:20 PM
Patch is doing a very good job of reporting on this issue. Suprisingly, they seem to be staying rather neutral. I wasn't expecting that from a HuffPo publication.
Ben Feldheim (Editor) June 22, 2012 at 04:22 PM
Just a quick note on that. Huffpo and Patch are both owned by Aol, and we do share stories on occasion, but our editorial decisions are our own.
Russ June 22, 2012 at 06:20 PM
Alan, there is no courage or honor running into a restaurant for a surprise attack, against non suspecting citizens, using baseball bats and numchucks. So, if these are the guys that really did the crime, I wouldn't expect them to be man enough to admit it and to accept the consequences for their actions.
Carrie Frillman June 22, 2012 at 06:51 PM
Russ, they aren't. That's why they were deleted. I actually suspended his account this morning because I've warned him so many time regarding his inappropriateness, which most recently transformed into direct threats to me. We take our terms of use seriously. Cingularman wasn't able to abide by the rules so he is no longer with us.
Rick June 22, 2012 at 07:21 PM
People like you make me hate whites.
Carrie Frillman June 22, 2012 at 07:31 PM
Thanks, Pro Con. I do the best I can to remain so.
Wilson Everbrite June 22, 2012 at 08:39 PM
Anti-Racism MUST be stopped wherever it rears it's ugly head.
cowboy June 23, 2012 at 11:31 AM
Those Ashford house five need a bath pray for our prisoners in cook county jail L O L
i'm back June 23, 2012 at 03:58 PM
i'm back
Carrie Frillman June 23, 2012 at 05:44 PM
Hi Cingularman, as many times as you come back, I will ban you as a user, as I just did—again. Your racism, personal threats and attacks on others are not welcome at Patch. Pack your bags and go. Thank you.
anthony June 23, 2012 at 07:12 PM
lol It sounds different than the way you mean it...... wait correction rofl
anthony June 23, 2012 at 07:25 PM
I been doing some research on this topic I was looking for the race that have advanced its own members the most... If you want to know why white men did so well in the world read the birth of plenty... Back to the point I wanted to make this a USA thing so i excluded world order secret orgs and such.... I wanted to keep it fairly recent to reflection business an industry..,. I thought to compare apples to apples in regards to size difference of any particular group I left the jew out because its not about race so much as religon or better word a lifestyle to live by and the fact everyone knows their practices no revelation.... The cambodians 1 guy got a cooks job at a donut shop back in the 70s They were fleeing the class warfare of the Khemer rouge. Anyway this one guy saved his money opened his own shop hired 4 more cambodians and from that humble start Cambodians own 80% of the donut shops in Calfornia .....What did you think the Indians thought up dunkin donuts
COWBOY June 23, 2012 at 08:28 PM
The Asford house 5 better not drop a bar of soap OUCH L O L
Shannon_Friend June 23, 2012 at 09:40 PM
Well I can see both sides of this. You can say "If it's OK to have a Latino Lawyers Association, why not a White Lawyers Association?". But there are some asymmetries. One is historical: not all that long ago white people retained legal and other privileges that others didn't have. (Ironically, Latinos were considered whites in most parts of the country, and many do consider themselves white--but never mind that.) So when people get together under the common banner of whiteness, it isn't so strange for others to suspect they might be trying to resurrect that, right? Ie to worry that they are closet Klansmen or something like that. Now of course you might say: "well we do have real common interests as whites precisely because of government programs (affirmative action) that deliberately disadvantage us at the expense of every other group." There is something to this argument, but still it's not strictly true: affirmative action programs in most places (and especially in places like university admissions) disadvantage Asians at least as much, too. So maybe if you want to resist efforts to give underperforming minority groups special rights at your expense, which is a perfectly legitimate view--the Chief Justice of the US Supreme Court and most of the public are clearly with you, for example--maybe you should do it under the banner of "White and Asian" so you don't give people the impression you are closet nazis or klansmen?
Sgt. USMC June 27, 2012 at 05:23 AM
* a legitimate, not an legitimate. Whoops.
Sgt. USMC June 27, 2012 at 05:26 AM
People that "ac" violently with a keyboard are usually the biggest wimps around. Otherwise, they would pick a fight with someone who could do something about it. Not attack a journalist that cannot hit them back. What a coward tha cingularman is.
HT2 USnavy June 30, 2012 at 06:41 PM
I'm linked to the defendants. They are my family and my brothers. They are my cousin and just 2 weeks before this happen they were at my wedding in Virginia Beach. For you to say that poor grammar and ignorance is associated with the defendants and makes me heated. There is a hit on my grandpa and our family indiana and your saying that they were just a peaceful white crowd doing nothing. Do i think they made the right decision? No, but you can't say the people they attacked had not been associated with other mob crimes, cause that's they were....
Ira Giveashit July 13, 2012 at 03:26 PM
I wonder if they will still be anti-racist when they get out of prison?
anthony July 13, 2012 at 05:35 PM
I hear they are getting tokens of admiration(snacks cigarettes ) and spending time explaining the merits of the different social movements How the system corrupts etc etc Seems like the have a ummm errr "Captivated audience"
Uncle Pen July 13, 2012 at 05:55 PM
@Shannon_Friend: You're stating that it's illegitimate for whites to protect their own interests unless they ally with some other group that has similar interests? Do you hold any other group to that odd requirement? Suppose Africa were being flooded with non-Africans and Africans forced by law to integrate with them so as to "assimilate," i.e. intermarry and be blended out of existence. Suppose Asia were being flooded with non-Asians and Asians forced by law to integrate with them so as to "assimilate," i.e. intermarry and be blended out of existence. Would Africans who protest that program of genocide being carried out against them be legitimate only if they allied themselves to Asians who were protesting the similar program of genocide being carried out against Asians? Of course not! But any white is considered illegitimate if that white protests the flooding of all white countries and only white countries with non-whites, and the fact that whites are forced by law to integrate with them so as to "assimilate," i.e. intermarry and be blended out of existence. The defendants in this assault who are members of "Anti-White Action" (let's give them a truthful name, since they label only white groups with their pejorative, "fascist," and have physically attacked only a peaceful white group) support the program of white genocide I just described. They say they are anti-racist. What they are is anti-white! Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white!
Uncle Pen July 13, 2012 at 06:11 PM
@HT2 USnavy "No, but you can't say the people they attacked had not been associated with other mob crimes," What utter nonsense! Because you're in the US Navy, should I hold you responsible for the deafening of whales and dolphins in the Pacific due to a Navy program you are not likely involved in and hopefully don't approve of? You sound like just another anti-white (and please don't protest that you're white yourself...that's irrelevant) who wants to excuse being anti-white! Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.
Uncle Pen July 13, 2012 at 06:33 PM
You're mistaken in your assumption, though I don't see what difference it would make if you weren't. But in fact, persons with my point of view are trying to produce an awakening everywhere to the true function of groups like this "Anti-White Action" group. The function of such groups is to protect the measures I've described below that constitute a program of genocide against whites (by U.N. definition of genocide). All else is small potatoes. Anti-racist is a code-word for anti-white.
Dogmom5957 July 30, 2012 at 04:24 PM
Discussing & what is the relevance?
Steve August 02, 2012 at 11:49 AM
@ HT2 USnavy Of course you would blame the "white crowd". You're probably one of the 13 racist hillbillies that got away. Just how many of the Sutherlin clan are living back there in that trailer park?
Mimereader2 August 30, 2012 at 04:33 AM
There is nothing in the 86 page 'Pioneer Little Europe Prospectus' by H. Michael Barrett which promotes White Supremacy. What it does say, however, is that only Americans of European descent will get a hostile reception if they even dare to assemble peacefully. And the Irish connection isn't an artifical construct, as the author worked with the late John Whooley; one of the primary Irish leaders credited with building the especially large Irish Cultural Center for the San Francisco Bay Area.


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