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Mount Prospect Man Deemed Fit For Sentencing

Richard Mayer

Paul Zalewski (left), Vladimir Esquivel (right)

During a brief court hearing Monday, Sept. 12, it was said that 26-year-old Paul Zalewski, the Mount Prospect resident convicted of first-degree murder in March, is mentally and physically fit to stand sentencing.

Zalewski, who has yet to be sentenced, remains in Cook County jail. After weeks trying to obtain a final report, Zalewski’s attorney, William Murphy, stated he received the report from Cook County’s Forensic Clinical Services, which stated his client is fit for sentencing.

The next court date in Rolling Meadows is set for Oct. 20, and according to Murphy, he anticipates Zalewski to be sentenced at that time. If so, the appeal process can begin shortly thereafter, he said.

Zalewski on March 8 was found guilty of murdering 29-year-old Vladimir Esquivel of Arlington Heights during a drug deal in February 2018 on Mount Prospect’s far south side. He was found guilty of first-degree murder, concealment of homicidal death, and possession of cannabis of more than 100 grams.

Murphy stated they will ask for a new trial for multiple reasons, including discrepancies in closing arguments that resulted in a guilty verdict, and a lack of evidence that showed Zalewski killed Esquivel with a gun.

Zalewski could be sentenced up to 45 years in prison.

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