IMAGE: Michael Kuhnhausen Sr.
Torsten Kjellstrand  /  The Oregonian
Michael Kuhnhausen Sr. is released from Multnomah County Jail on bail Tuesday in Portland, but Kuhnhausen was returned to jail after his son's landlord objected to Kuhnhausen’s living at his property.
updated 1/2/2007 7:56:47 PM ET 2007-01-03T00:56:47

A last-minute objection from a landlord Tuesday left a Portland man accused in a murder for hire without a place to go free on bail, authorities said.

So, Michael Kuhnhausen Sr. went back to jail, where has has been since September, accused of hiring an ex-convict to kill his estranged wife, Susan.

She fought off the intruder, who was armed with a claw hammer, and then strangled him, police said.

Kuhnhausen was taken out of the Multnomah County jail on Tuesday and was being processed for release to his son, but Lt. Jason Gates of the Multnomah County Sheriff's Department said officials learned that the son's landlord had decided the high-profile defendant wasn't welcome.

Kuhnhausen's bail conditions require him to be under house arrest and wear an anklet monitored by Global Positioning System to notify authorities if he leaves.

"In consultation with his attorney, he choose to return to jail rather than risk having his pretrial release revoked and be placed under arrest," the Department of Community Justice said.

Kuhnhausen's daughter from a previous marriage put up $100,000 on Friday to get him released. Gates said Kuhnhausen can't stay at his daughter's place because she's a witness in the case.

Gates said that meant Kuhnhausen may have to remain in jail until his February trial.

Last week, a Multnomah County judge cut his bail in half, to $1 million. Putting up a tenth of that amount is enough to satisfy the bail requirement.

Prosecutors said Kuhnhausen hired Edward Haffey, and Haffey told acquaintances he planned to kill a man's wife for $25,000 in advance and $25,000 afterward. Police said Haffey worked for Kuhnhausen in an adult book store.

Prosecutors say Kuhnhausen was having his wife killed to avoid losses in the divorce.

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