A judge ruled in favor of a mistrial Tuesday morning in the case against Richard McTear, the man accused of killing a 3-month-old baby by throwing him out of a moving car.
It is a major blow to attorneys, who spent a week to seat a jury because of the case's high profile. On Monday, it was comments by McTear's ex-girlfriend that threw the whole trial in jeopardy.
Opening statements wrapped up, with the prosecution painting McTear as a cold-blooded killer who was jealous over his ex-girlfriend's relationship with another man. The defense told the jury, however, there was no physical evidence that McTear had anything to do with his baby's death.
He's accused of throwing Emanuel Murray out of a window on I-275.
But on Monday afternoon, the baby's mother, Jasmine Bedwell, took the stand and said McTear had threatened to shoot the infant. She also mentioned things about a phone call that the jury was never supposed to hear.
"Mr. McTear had two separate cases he had been charged in, one occurred in March, the death of this baby occurred in May," Julie Holt of the public defender's office explained. "The statements that Ms. Bedwell introduced for the May trial, which was yesterday, occurred in March. Mr. McTear was found not guilty by a jury of his peers, and therefore, those statements were not relevant – and not properly admissible in this particular case."
The jurors were sent home, and Judge William Fuente agreed.
He returned to court Tuesday morning, deliberated on his own for about 30 minutes, and then came back to let the court know he "reluctantly" was declaring a mistrial.
FOX 13's Gloria Gomez reports attorneys will meet again in September to try and figure out a new trial date. After that, the court will start again at square one.
FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
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