Juror's Email Causes Mistrial for Man Accused in Crash Death of Prince George's Police Officer

"The actions of this juror are a complete disgrace," says Prince George's state's attorney. Kevon Neal will be tried again in the case.

Trial for Kevon Neal, 24, was declared a mistrial Thursday.|Photo credit: PGPD
Trial for Kevon Neal, 24, was declared a mistrial Thursday.|Photo credit: PGPD
A mistrial was declared Thursday in the case of a man facing vehicular manslaughter charges in the death of a Prince George's County police officer, after a juror sent a late-night email to to the judge claiming she could not pass judgment in the case due to religious beliefs. 

Kevon Neal, 24, of Fort Washington, was facing vehicular manslaughter charges in the death of Prince George's County police officer Adrian Morris. Morris, 23, was killed when his cruiser careened off I-95 near Powder Mill Road in August 2012. 

According to police, Morris had been pursuing a silver Acura thought to contain two suspects who stole a purse at a Shell gas station in Laurel. The car reportedly cut across multiple lanes quickly, causing Morris to veer off the road as he attempted to dodge braking vehicles. Police accused Neal of being the driver of the fleeing vehicle, which was determined to be stolen. 

“The actions of this juror are a complete disgrace,” Prince George's County State's Attorney Angela Alsobrooks said in a statement.  “This is a very serious matter in which a police officer lost his life and it appears this juror simply did not take their role seriously at all.”

The juror's statements led to her nullification, causing a mistrial in the case. 

Potential jurors were questioned during selection and were asked if they would be unable to serve due to religious beliefs. The juror in question did not speak up at that time, according to the state's attorney's office. The state's attorney's office said the juror told "multiple different stories," leading Alsobrooks to call the juror's actions "highly irresponsible."

The judge in the case, the Honorable Michael Pearson, can decide whether to hold the juror in contempt of court. 

The case will be retried sometime in May or June, Alsobrooks said. 

“We will absolutely continue to seek justice on behalf of officer Morris,” Alsobrooks said in a statement. 

Jay Friedman January 09, 2014 at 09:06 PM
Two things must happen and quickly in this case. 1. Very intense investigation of the juror to determine if the juror or someone the juror knows, also knew the defendant. 2. Very intense investigation to determine if the juror was contacted either by anyone and told or suggested that the juror should change his/her mind. Would not be the first time for a Prince Georges trial.


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