October 8, 2009

Murder Trial to Begin October 14th in Shelby County

A Memphis man will go on trial in Shelby County next week on first degree murder charges stemming from the first homicide in Scotland County in more than 30 years.

Michael J. Mutchler, 23, is charged with murder in the first degree and armed criminal action stemming from the death of Joseph D. Alvey of Wyaconda on June 8, 2008. Alvey died at a rural Gorin residence from gunshot wounds.

The trial will begin Wednesday, October 14th in the Shelby County Courthouse after a change of venue was ordered earlier this year. The case will be heard by Shelby County Judge Gary Wallace.

Scotland County Prosecutor Kim Nicoli is handling the case with the assistance of Assistant Attorney General Kevin Zoellner of the Missouri Attorney Generals Office.

This marks the first homicide case in Scotland County since 1976, when a Gorin man was charged with second degree murder following the death of Gorin School superintendent C. Carson Erwin.

Merle Edward Zweifel was ultimately sentenced to 10 years in prison after being convicted by a Scotland County jury of manslaughter.

Erwin reportedly died in his office of an apparent heart attack following a confrontation with Zweifel that stemmed from the disciplining of one of Zweifels children.

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