Buffalo Police Officer Corey Krug. (John Hickey/Buffalo News)
A note from the jurors confirmed their inability to reach a verdict on the final count but made no mention of what they decided on the three other charges against Krug.
An 18-year veteran of the police force, Krug is accused of using excessive force on three separate occasions dating back nearly nine years.
U.S. District Judge Richard J. Arcara sent the jury home late Monday after receiving their note but indicated he wants them to continue deliberations Tuesday in hopes of breaking the logjam.
Arcara also said he is opposed to accepting a partial verdict at this point in time.
“I’m not inclined to do that,” he told lawyers on Monday.
The jury was in its seventh day of deliberations, and operating with one less juror, when they announced their partial verdict in the note to Arcara.
For the second time since the trial started, one of the 12 jurors was excused, this time because of emergency dental surgery that made her unavailable until next month.
Arcara ordered the 11 remaining jurors to continue deliberations rather than add an alternate juror.
In making his ruling, the judge pointed to the six previous days of deliberations and noted that adding a new juror would require the panel to start deliberations from scratch.
Defense attorneys, in contrast, pointed to the relatively short trial, two weeks long, and argued in favor of keeping the panel at 12 members.
“Our preference is to seat a new juror,” said defense attorney Terrence M. Connors.
Prosecutors countered by pushing for an 11-member jury and arguing that existing jurors would find it difficult to ignore past discussions.
“We’ve had six days of deliberations,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Aaron J. Mango said Monday. “It would be extremely hard for jurors to put that out of their mind.”
The juror excused by Arcara is not the first juror to be removed. The judge also removed a juror on the first day of the trial, but replaced him with an alternate. That excused juror had noted that, several months ago, his son had a bullying encounter with one of Krug’s relatives.
At the core of the prosecution against Krug is a WKBW-TV video of his encounter with Devin Ford, one of his three accusers, on Chippewa Street on Thanksgiving morning in 2014.
Ford and the other two men claim Krug assaulted them without cause while on duty. Krug claims his use of force was justified and reasonable.
If convicted, Krug would face a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.
|Published “Jury in police brutality trial reaches verdict on 3 of 4 charges”, https://buffalonews.com/2019/02/25/juror-in-police-brutality-trial-excused/