updated 3/30/2005 1:57:35 PM ET 2005-03-30T18:57:35

Prosecutors hoping for a witness in a murder case to roll over were barking up the wrong tree.

  1. Don't miss these Health stories
    1. Splash News
      More women opting for preventive mastectomy - but should they be?

      Rates of women who are opting for preventive mastectomies, such as Angeline Jolie, have increased by an estimated 50 percent in recent years, experts say. But many doctors are puzzled because the operation doesn't carry a 100 percent guarantee, it's major surgery -- and women have other options, from a once-a-day pill to careful monitoring.

    2. Larry Page's damaged vocal cords: Treatment comes with trade-offs
    3. Report questioning salt guidelines riles heart experts
    4. CDC: 2012 was deadliest year for West Nile in US
    5. What stresses moms most? Themselves, survey says

They sent out a batch of subpoenas for anyone who had contact with Albert K. Smith while he was jailed awaiting his murder trial. One of those subpoenas went out to 5-year-old Murphy Smith — Smith’s dog, it turned out.

The defendant had written his dog a letter from his cell, and that is how the shih tzu’s name got on the witness list.

Prosecutors realized the mistake on Tuesday after the defendant’s brother brought in Murphy to answer the subpoena and a deputy would not let them into the courthouse because no dogs were allowed.

Prosecutor Robin Green said she apologized to the brother for any inconvenience, and added: “The dog was friendly enough and probably would have been a very cooperative witness.”

Albert Smith is accused of shooting to death his ex-wife’s boyfriend.

© 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Discuss:

Discussion comments

,

Most active discussions

  1. votes comments
  2. votes comments
  3. votes comments
  4. votes comments