The judge in the murder case against a Jasper man has rejected a request that she remove herself from the case.

Cherokee County Chief Superior Court Judge Ellen McElyea denied the request of Gary Matthew Allen, 31, to remove herself from his case. McElyea last week denied the request made in an Oct. 25 motion.

Allen is charged with malice murder, felony murder, aggravated assault, aggravated battery and simple battery stemming from a Canton bar fight last June in which Leon Paul Danzis, 45, of Hoschton died.

In his motion seeking McElyea to remove herself from the case, Allen alleges the fact that the judge is married to Canton city attorney Robert Dyer is a conflict of interest. The conflict stems from the fact “at least twelve,” Canton detectives and patrol officers are potential witnesses against Allen, the motion states. The motion was filed by Allen’s lawyer, Scott Poole.

In rejecting the request for recusal, McElyea cited errors in the request. First, she wrote that it was not supported by an accompanying affidavit, a statement of facts in support of the request. And, she said the motion needed to have been filed within five days after McElyea disclosed her relationship to Dyer at Allen’s arraignment on Oct. 4, where she denied his request to be released on bond.

The indictment against Allen alleges Danzis was beaten in the face and head by Allen, and suffered multiple fractures of his face and skull. Witnesses told WSB-TV in June that Danzis was struck in the head with a pool cue, though court records refer to fists, elbows and “an object” being used in the attack. The brawl occurred at the Canton Icehouse, 150 Keith Drive, Canton.

Another Jasper man, Adam James Blackburn, 36, was charged with two misdemeanor counts of battery related to the fight. He was released from the Cherokee County jail on $2,000 bond in July.

Managing Editor

Gary Tanner is managing editor of The Cherokee Tribune, Cherokee Ledger-News and Cherokee Life magazine. He has been working as a journalist since 1985.

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