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Howard Shriver trial postponed

By Staff | Jan 22, 2014

Howard Paul Shriver

Editor’s Note: The Howard Shriver trial that was to begin Tuesday (as is on the front of today’s Tyler Star News), was postponed Tuesday afternoon after our paper went to press because they couldn’t seat 13 jurors. The matter was passed until Feb. 12 when they will set another trial date.

A man accused of attempted murder, among other things, is currently on trial in Tyler County Circuit Court.

A trial began Tuesday for Howard Paul Shriver, 34, who allegedly used an axe-like weapon Oct. 8, 2012, in an attempt to break into a home and attack his wife and two young children.

Shriver was indicted on 11 separate counts from the February term of the grand jury: Count one, attempted malicious wounding; count two, domestic battery; count three, burglary; count four, violation of a protective order; count five, retaliation of a witness; count six, retaliation of a witness; count seven, unlawful restraint; count eight, domestic assault; count nine, domestic assault; count 10, destruction of property; and count 11, attempted murder.

When he appeared in court Thursday, Shriver’s attorney, Jay Gerber, said he didn’t feel there could be an agreement reached in the case. He felt the parties were too far apart. He then requested a trial date.

Judge Mark A. Karl noted they were approaching the end of the term of court and he asked if there could be a waiver until next term of court. Both the defendant and the prosecution indicated they were prepared to proceed to trial, which both Gerber and Prosecutor Luke Furbee felt would require more than one day.

Furbee said he had a witness list of 24, although he wasn’t sure if he would use them all. It was also noted the defense has at least three alibi witnesses.

Karl set the trial date for Tuesday and told Gerber to have his client there in civilian clothes. Gerber then made a request for his client to be allowed to wear his military clothes to the trial.

Prosecutor Furbee objected, saying he didn’t feel it would be proper as Shriver is no longer active in the service. He also said it may draw sympathy from the jury and he feels that is the intent. Gerber said he doesn’t know of any case law that prohibits it. Karl said he would consider the request but to have Shriver in court on Tuesday in civilian attire. He then remanded Shriver to the Northern Regional Jail.