Judge declares mistrial in Pettway case - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Judge declares mistrial in Pettway case

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Steven Pettway Steven Pettway
Troya Sheckles Troya Sheckles

Rather than a jury deciding if Steven Pettway rally did kill Troya Sheckles in Shelby Park, the 20 year-old gets a new trial.

Friday Judge Geoffery Morris declared a mistrial after his attorney argued she just received evidence that someone else is the killer.

It's hundreds of phone calls made from the jail. Steven Pettway's  attorney says some of them are about Troya Sheckles before her murder others include eye witnesses who name someone other than Pettway as the killer.

A quick smile came across Steven Pettway's face after the judge agreed his attorney can start over going through evidence in Pettway's murder trial.

A jury had already heard a full day's worth of evidence when Leslie Smith requested phone calls made from jail just minutes after Sheckles was killed in Shelby Park. Police say she was a target so she couldn't testify in another murder trial.

"I think I'm getting two calls. I'm getting 266," said Smith. 

In those calls she says there are conversations about people who could have killed Sheckles that she hasn't heard before.

Prosecutor Tom Van De Rostyne said Smith received the information about the tapes in a letter before the trial. He didn't think it was pertinent information. "It appears to be complete hearsay. Someone is saying they heard someone said this. They're saying a slang name."

In opening statements, Smith told jurors Pettway was a scape–goat. Friday she told the judge the conversations change that. "My opening, in theory, would have been completely different in this case. People were talking about who it was right after it happened."

The judge is giving her several months to go through the calls. Van De Rostyne said he's still confident even then it won't change their case. "We'd like to get some justice for Troya. We're going to keep going until we do that."

Pettway's new trial is set for May, but Pettway's attorney has her way, that trial won't happen. Next week there's a hearing for her to request that the case against him be dismissed completely.

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