Judge declares mistrial in Rauhuff murder case
By J.J. Kindred | (firstname.lastname@example.org)
A mistrial was declared by Blount County Circuit Court Judge David Duggan this morning during the continuance of the murder trial of Jimmy Lynn Rauhuff, who was charged with murdering his neighbor in October 2010.
Rauhuff, 42, is accused of beating 65-year-old James Arthur Moser to death Oct. 16, 2010, inside his home on Cave Road. He is charged with first-degree premeditated murder, first-degree murder while perpetrating an aggravated burglary, first-degree murder during the perpetration of a theft, aggravated burglary and theft greater than $500.
Duggan announced before the trial resumed that Rob White, Rauhuff’s attorney, ordered prior to the trial that Rauhuff’s cell phone records be produced by the state. A hearing was held last week that addressed the motion of discovery for the telephone records. Blount County Assistant District Attorney Clinton Frazier said the records had been subpoenaed, but were never received.
Because the records were never received, Duggan denied the motion because there was no documents to turn over, so White brought Duggan a motion and an order during the trial to receive the records, which Duggan signed.
Duggan explained that the cellular phone company responded to White by providing a copy of a subpoena Duggan signed in November 2010, indicating that those records had in fact been produced. The state had the records, but were never presented. It was also discovered that the records were Moser’s, and not of Rauhuff’s, in an apparent mistake made by the prosecution.
Duggan said he had no choice but to declare a mistrial, and set up a status hearing for next month to declare a new trial date, once the phone records matter has been resolved.
The trial lasted for approximately three days, with witness testimony from neighbors, acquaintances and investigating officers.
More details on this story will be available in Saturday’s print edition of The Daily Times.