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Court hearings for Denise Williams rescheduled

(WCTV)
Published: Jun. 6, 2018 at 9:00 AM EDT
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By: WCTV Eyewitness News

June 6, 2018

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- Court hearing dates have been rescheduled for

who disappeared during a hunting trip in 2000 and was later found dead.

Williams was due in court Wednesday morning for a bond hearing and a case management hearing, but both were canceled. We first reported the cancellation Tuesday night.

The cancellation order comes on the heels of a request by prosecutor Jon Fuchs asking the judge to listen to a lengthy

by accused trigger man Brian Winchester before the hearing. The defense, court records show, objected to that request and the judge said no.

In his cancellation order, Circuit Judge James Hankinson cites that dispute - and the length of the tape - saying he does not want to consider the bond request piecemeal.

Ethan Way, Williams' attorney, says Winchester's recorded statement only reveals what is already known, which is that Winchester killed Mike Williams.

"It doesn't tell me anything about my client. My client's not guilty. All you have is the word of somebody who is jilted; somebody who's in prison. Someone who's in prison because he kidnapped Denise Williams at gunpoint. He's somebody who's got nothing better to do than to try to bring her down." Way said.

In Winchester's recorded interview with investigators, he says he and Denise planned for Mike Williams to drown during a duck hunting trip. Winchester confessed to ultimately shooting Williams and burying his body in another location.

Winchester's lawyer, Tim Jansen, tells us Winchester stands by his story and will testify to it in court.

Way says Denise Williams had nothing to do with the murder. He said, "If you'll recall, the only person in court in December of 2017 asking for Brian Winchester to be sentenced to life in prison was my client. He has motive and he has time. Those are the two dangerous combinations for someone to make up a story."

Nothing Winchester says in his recorded confession can be used against him.

Attorney Way says the fact that Winchester has an immunity deal should be taken into consideration during the rescheduled hearing, when determining if Denise can bond out of jail on the murder charges.

A new bond hearing date has been set for June 18. A case management hearing will be held the following day.