By Associated Press - Friday, February 26, 2016

ROSEBURG, Ore. (AP) - A judge in Roseburg declared a mistrial after one juror refused to join 11 others in convicting a man of murder.

Several men were arrested in 2013 after a Douglas County man was slain in his home while being robbed of medical marijuana. One of the men pleaded guilty in the case and another, William Aguayo, was on trial for much of February.

After two days of deliberations, the jury foreman informed Judge Randolph Garrison there was a deadlock, the News-Review reported (https://is.gd/UBqQZZ).



“Tensions are high right now,” the foreman said Thursday. “It has been said that people are not going to change their minds.”

The jury convicted Aguayo of burglary and robbery, but it was 11-1 on the murder charge.

Defense attorney Don Scales asked the judge to rule in favor of a mistrial, saying the person voting not guilty would feel tremendous pressure to switch his vote if the jury continued deliberations.

Garrison declined, saying there was no evidence the jury had “gone as far as they can go.” He said it was just as likely for 11 jurors to convince one as it was for one juror to convince 11.

“If they all want to get out of here, they could all vote ‘not guilty’ just as easily,” Garrison said.

After some time, prosecutor Steve Hoddle asked the judge to accept the verdict, citing an Oregon statute that allows for 11-to-1 convictions.

“You’re dead on arrival,” the judge told Hoddle.

Garrison eventually declared a mistrial on the count of murder, but accepted the rest of the verdict. Aguayo will be sentenced on the robbery and burglary charges next month.

Hoddle said he’ll retry the murder case.

During closing arguments, Hoddle argued that, by a process of elimination, Aguayo must have been in possession of a rod-like weapon and aided in the attack. The defense said Aguayo played no part.

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Information from: The News-Review, https://www.nrtoday.com

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