Cuming County District Court Judge Mark Johnson today declared a mistrial in the Derek Olson murder trial . A new trial is tentatively to begin in May.
Derek Olson, 29, of Oakland, is charged with second-degree murder, use of a weapon to commit a felony, second-degree arson and cruelty to an animal for the death of a dog in a fire.
The mistrial was declared after testimony from Officer Galen Svoboda, of Game and Parks. Svoboda was an investigator with the Nebraska State Patrol in March of 2017 when he interviewed the defendant’s father, Jody Olson. During testimony, Svoboda inadvertently mentioned he was present during a poly…pre-polygraph examination of Jody Powell. Defendant’s counsel at a side-bar later moved for a mistrial due to the polygraph comment.
Jody Olson had pleaded guilty to murder in the second degree as part of a plea agreement. He testified at his own trial that Derek Olson is the one who repeatedly stabbed 64 year old Ernest Warnock until Warnock fell over dead. According to court documents, Derek and Jody Olson were at Warnock’s home to retrieve property belonging to Becky Weitzenkamp, who also was present.