By Danielle Chavira

WELD COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4) – The attorney for Steve Pankey announce he will not continue representing the defendant in the case of Jonelle Matthews’ murder. Anthony Viorst defended Pankey during a five week-long trial in Weld County which ended in a mistrial.

(credit: CBS)

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Pankey was charged with kidnapping and murdering 12-year-old Jonelle Matthews. The girl disappeared from her Greeley home in 1984.

Last week, the court declared a mistrial on the murder charges. A second jury could re-try the case, but Viorst says he doesn’t not have the resources to see that through.

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Steve Pankey (credit: CBS)

“Given the nature of my small practice and my relative advanced age, I’m just not in a position to devote the time and energy necessary yo retry this case,” said Viorst.

Because Pankey was ruled guilty of false reporting to authorities he could be sentenced to up to six months behind bars. Pankey now has a new public defender. His bond remains at $5 million.

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Another hearing is scheduled for Nov. 17. His new attorneys might ask for a change of venue.

Danielle Chavira