Two possibilities arise as to why the police involved in the shooting were not called to testify in the Coroner's inquest:
1.) Behan successfully managed to manipulate Matthews in the selection of witnesses, thus putting the Earps in the worst possible light.
2.) Another possibility is that Tom Fitch advised the Earps not to testify before Matthews because of the risk of prematurely exposing defense strategy. The negative result of the Coroner's inquest was to put the Earps and Holliday in a bad light in the public mind. But, because so many of the witnesses who testified before Matthews voiced what would become the prosecution case, the end result was to provide the defense with a detailed preview of the forthcoming prosecution case. This ultimately gave the defense a significant advantage when Spicer held his hearing.
Matthews talked to the people that were on the scene that day, and based on those initial conversations put together a witness list for the inquest. The most curious thing about the coroner's inquest ... more
Jeff, Is it realistic to think that the Earps were already conferring with Fitch within a couple of hours of the street fight? I don't know, maybe they were, but I have never seen anything on it.... more