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TRIAL UPDATE: Court in recess Thursday morning while defense views tape
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MONROE - Casey Shelton's trial was delayed until 1 p.m. Thursday because his attorney didn't receive a copy of a tape made at the Green County Sheriff's Department.

Shelton, 32, Brodhead, is charged with first-degree reckless homicide, a class B felony, in connection with the Feb. 28, 2007, death of his 2-month-old son, Christopher. He faces 60 years in prison, if convicted.

Michael Murphy, Shelton's attorney, told the court when the proceedings began at about 8:30 a.m. today that he hadn't received a tape, made April 20, 2007, that showed Christopher's mother, Amy Uptegraw, telling sheriff's department detectives about Shelton abusing their children.

Murphy discovered he didn't have the tape Wednesday, he said.

Murphy said he didn't know why he hadn't received the four-hour tape. He said it was possible Shelton's former attorney, Frank Medina, didn't include the tape with other materials given to Murphy when he took over the case from Medina in February 2008.

Green County Circuit Court Judge James Beer told Murphy and Green County Assistant District Attorney Jeff Kohl that it was important Murphy and Shelton be able to view the tape before it was introduced as evidence in the case. He dismissed the jury until the afternoon to allow the defense time to view the tape.

The weeklong trial could go into Saturday, depending on how many witnesses testify and how long their testimony lasts, Beer said today.

The trial can't continue Monday because Martin Luther King Jr. Day is a federal holiday and the courts can't be open, Beer said. Court can be in session Sunday, if necessary. The trial was scheduled for this week, but the Green County Courthouse's only jury-ready courtroom is scheduled for another jury trial on Tuesday.

Court records indicate Shelton called 911 at about 6:30 p.m. Feb. 28, 2007, and told them he needed an ambulance at his residence in Decatur township because his baby stopped breathing. He told emergency responders he was feeding the baby when the baby began to choke.

Christopher was pronounced dead at Mercy Hospital in Janesville.

He was arrested May 14, 2007, in Rock County. He remains jailed on a $100,000 cash bond.