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William Small

William Small

A rape trial in Missoula County District Court ended Wednesday morning in a mistrial, with Judge John Larson calling off the proceedings during a police sergeant's testimony.

William Small, 56, is accused of attempting to rape an unconscious woman on the courthouse lawn in broad daylight on May 27.

The police dashcam video shown during the trial captured audio of Small, a homeless man known to law enforcement, telling police, "I was just having sex with her," several minutes before first responders are able to rouse the woman, also homeless. 

Larson ended the trial when one of the officers who arrived on scene that day was testifying about the charge's distinction between misdemeanor and felony. The prosecution had not yet rested their case when the jury was cleared.

The trial has been reset for December.


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