Mistrial declared in Tony Callihan case - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Mistrial declared in Tony Callihan case

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A mistrial was declared Thursday in the Tony Callihan murder trial. A mistrial was declared Thursday in the Tony Callihan murder trial.
SPOKANE, Wash. - After more than a week of testimony, Judge James Triplett declared a mistrial Thursday afternoon in the murder trial of Tony Callihan. 

Callihan's Defense attorney Derek Reid asked for a mistrial after his expert witness gave notice this week that he was no longer able to testify in the case for "undisclosed reasons." Reid argued there was no way for the defense to move forward without the expert witness.

Michelle Koenen's death was declared a homicide in 2012, but the expert witness for the defense was apparently going to rule her cause of death as suicide. 

The judge also cited allegations of a juror talking about the case on social media as an additional reason for the mistrial. 

Callihan is accused of murdering Michelle Koenen in 2012, a woman he had been dating, and leaving the scene in her car.

According to court documents released following Koenen's murder, Callihan told his stepfather he had "just killed a girl." He said he met her at a "meth party", shoved her and choked her. Court documents said Callihan had a conversation with his stepfather who chastised him for driving because Callihan's license was suspended. Callihan told his stepdad, "Don't worry about that. That's the least of my worries."

Before leaving, Callihan borrowed money from his stepfather and collected a number of clothes. According to court documents, Callihan's stepfather later told detectives that Callihan was nervous, fidgety and "freaking out."

The next morning Callihan returned to his stepfather's home and court documents said he appeared to be even more bothered and upset, but this time he let out the detail that he had "just killed a girl." According to court documents, Callihan told his stepfather that it was a girl in a house near the Broadway Market. Callihan described the house as being "bright yellow and next to a house that was boarded up."

The stepfather knew of the home Callihan told him about because he thought Tony had a possible girlfriend or someone he was seeing there. Once he obtained the information he called the Spokane Police Department and told 9-1-1 what Callihan had said. Two officers arrived on scene and entered the home with a key provided by the landlord. That is when they found Michelle Koenen dead with trauma to her face, lying in bed.

Callihan's new trial will begin February 2, 2015. 



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