Petal man claims self defense in killing his brother-in-law


By Mike McDaniel - bio | email | Twitter

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - The state has rested and the defendant has taken the stand in his own defense in the trial of Petal man accused of murdering his brother-in-law.

Daniel Koehler, 36,  says the stabbing of his relative was in self defense.

He is charged with stabbing Christopher Mason multiple times during a heated argument in November of 2009. The argument started when Mason accused his brother-in-law of getting him fired from his job.

Testimony for a pathologist stated Mason's blood alcohol level was three times the legal limit. The prosecution countered by saying the stabbing was not in self defense and that Koehler left the verbal argument and returned with a knife.

Both of Mason's daughters testified Wednesday that they witnessed the fight and one of them said she saw her Uncle Koehler stab her father.

On a side note, the assistant pathologist had to testify about the autopsy findings because the original pathologist is behind bars. Tennessee medical examiner Bruce Levi was arrested in Jackson last month on charges of marijuana possession.

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