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The defense rests in the Michael Bever murder trial after calling only two witnesses

Posted: 5:42 PM, May 08, 2018
Updated: 2018-05-08 22:42:33Z
The defense rests in the Michael Bever murder trial after calling only two witnesses

TULSA, Okla. -- The Michael Bever trial came to a shocking halt Tuesday afternoon when the defense rested after just two witnesses.

The Broken Arrow teen is accused of stabbing six family members and killing five. The Chief Public Defender rested after taking Robert Bever and Broken Arrow's lead detective off the stand. Corbin Brewster said he fought for multiple other witnesses that the judge ultimately ruled were not relevant in this phase of the trial.

"What's the relevance of the issue of a missing hard drive? How do you connect that to whether or not Robert and Michael killed their family?" Tulsa County District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler said.
 
Brewster had hoped to include the original detective for Broken Arrow who was taken off the case for mishandling of evidence, and an expert who evaluated Michael's state of mind. This goes back to Bever's defense that he was coerced into helping his brother that night.

"His ability to handle himself under the kind of stress he was in. We heard testimony from Robert that there were threats the night of July 22nd. So we thought that would be important context for the jury," Brewster said.

The 19-year-old faces six charges: five first degree murder counts and one count of assault and battery with intent to kill. On all of those counts, Bever is pleading not guilty.

Closing arguments are expected for Wednesday morning and then the jury will deliberate.

If Michael is found guilty of any of the murder charges there will be a separate sentencing phase. At that point, both sides can bring in additional evidence and witnesses.

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