Juneau County Judge declares mistrial
Day 4 of the Dan Coughlin trial brought forth new evidence not previously disclosed. Judge John Roemer said, ”Juneau County Detective Shaun Goyette had just discovered Thursday morning a CD labeled ‘video’ of the interviews of the alleged victims. One was 6-hours in length and the second interview was 4-hours long. The videos are on the hard drive of the Juneau County Sheriff’s Office video recording system. But when they were downloaded onto a CD, only the audio portion was captured and distributed prior to the trial.” Thursday morning, Defense Attorney Michael Ganzer argued, “Even though only the audio was downloaded to a CD, I could have hired someone or the State, with all of its resources, could have gotten someone to download both the video and audio portions of the interviews onto CDs if I would have known they were on the Juneau County Sheriff’s Office video recording system. I shaped my case and used an expert witness to testify that inappropriate interview techniques had been used and showed transcripts of the audio to the jury, when I could have used a TV screen and showed the video.” Judge Roemer declared a mistrial and dismissed the jury. The court scheduled hearings in the fall to determine any sanctions and whether the case will be retried. Coughlin is accused of sexual assault of two minors. Whether the discovery of the video interviews will affect Donald Coughlin’s jury trial at the end of the month, Special Prosecutor Assistant Attorney General Winn Collins told the court he would have to contact Don Coughlin’s defense attorney first. Don Coughlin is also accused of sexually assaulting minors.
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