Beach Hazards and Air Quality alerts in effect for Thursday

Mistrial declared, then plea deal offered in Van Buren Co murder case

PAW PAW, Mich.  — Troy Lee Taylor allegedly gunned down Timothy Henley in Gobles on June 21st, but the judge presiding over Taylor’s homicide case declared a mistrial Thursday due to a hung jury.

Van Buren County Prosecuting Attorney Michael Bedford tells FOX 17 the mistrial declaration was given after the 12-person jury had deliberated most of the day. Bedford says Taylor, 38, agreed afterward to accept the same voluntary-manslaughter plea deal that was extended to him before the trial. It calls for a minimum sentence of four to seven years under court guidelines, or a maximum sentence of up to 15 years in prison.

Taylor’s sentencing hearing is set for February 4th in Van Buren County Circuit Court, before Judge Kathleen Brickley. Taylor allegedly shot Henley three times in front of a house in the 31000 block of Brandywine Road, north of Paw Paw.  That was after the 40-year-old Henley – a former friend of Taylor – got into a dispute with him and smashed a window on Taylor’s  BMW, according to investigators. 

Two days after the homicide, police confiscated what they believed to be Taylor’s getaway car at a home of a Taylor friend on 34-1/2 Mile Road in Paw Paw. It was covered in a tarp. Five days after the homicide, Taylor was arrested. He’s from Bloomingdale.

Taylor’s attorney argued in court that Taylor fired the shots in self-defense. Henley was a Kalamazoo resident.

Bedford tells FOX 17, “It’s a tragedy. I feel very bad for the family, I feel for their loss. Our hope is they get the closure they’re looking for.”


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