A judge declared a mistrial Tuesday after several Oklahoma City police officers scheduled to testify were called on to provide tornado assistance in the Moore area.
As many as 15 officers are listed as witnesses in the state's case against Adam Piro, who is charged with assault and battery with a deadly weapon.
Piro is accused of shooting at police officers from a stolen vehicle in November 2010, court records show.
Some of the police witnesses were waiting to take the stand Monday afternoon when they learned about the devastating twister via their radios.
“I wanted those officers to help with the recovery efforts instead of sitting in my courtroom waiting to testify,” Oklahoma County District Judge Cindy Truong said.
Prosecutors intend to retry Piro, whose first trial ended in a hung jury. The judge reset the case for next month.
“We just don't know when the officers will be available,” First District Attorney Scott Rowland said. “We didn't want to inconvenience the jury.”
A separate jury convicted Piro earlier this month of assaulting a jail inmate and recommended a 20-year prison sentence.
Tim Willert is a native Californian with Oklahoma ties who covers education. Prior to moving to Oklahoma in June 2011, he was as an editor for... read more ›