Mistrial declared in first Twin Peaks shootout trial - KXXV Central Texas News Now

Mistrial declared in first Twin Peaks shootout trial

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(Source: KXXV) (Source: KXXV)
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A judge declared a mistrial around 2:40 p.m. on Friday after the jury sent a note to the jury stating they were deadlocked on all three counts against Twin Peaks biker Christopher Jacob Carrizal.

Carrizal, the president of the Dallas Chapter of the Bandidos, was indicted on one count of directing activities of a criminal street gang and engaging in organized criminal activity.

From the National President of the Bandidos to family members were present when the judge announced the mistrial to the jury on day 21 of the trial.

When Carrizal's mother walked outside the courtroom she was visibly emotional.

"Thank God," said Sonia Carrizal. "My son is going home."

Carrizal’s defense attorney considered a mistrial, a win.

 “There wasn't enough evidence that the Dallas Chapter, and specifically Jake Carrizal had committed any violence against any person that wasn’t self-defense so today it's a victory,” Gotro said.

The defense attorney had asked for a mistrial earlier in the trial claiming prosecutors were keeping evidence from her.

McLennan County Abel Reyna described the outcome a draw.

 “We received good feedback from the jury and I think it is feedback we can utilize to make our case stronger. It's still early on with respect to making that decision but right now if you would have me to commit me to something, my intention would be to say that yes my intention is to retry Mr. Carrizal,” Reyna said.

If he is tried again, another jury will be chosen. Reyna thanked the jurors who were part of this trial for their time and commitment to deliberating this case.

"We knew this when it started, that  this was going to be a tough fight and the one thing I can say is that I'm not going to give up,” Reyna said.

Gotro said she didn’t think there would be another trial for her client.

“Given the reaction in the jury room, in my experience, I haven’t seen district attorneys too hot to try cases when the jury spoke as clearly as this they just did,” Gotro said.

Before the judge declared a mistrial on Friday afternoon, jurors had sent a note at 11 a.m. stating members had reached a unanimous decision on one count, but they were still deadlocked on two others after resuming deliberations at 9 a.m.

According to Gotro, the jury had agreed the defendant was not guilty of the count of directing activities of a criminal street gang and they struggled with the other two.

"We've come to a conclusion on one of the counts. At this point, we have jurors who are ready to wait a month or longer and are unwilling to review any evidence or testimony provided over the last weeks in the trial. We don't believe any amount of deliberation will change minds," the note stated. "We have concerns if this takes much longer some of us will encounter financial difficulties."

McLennan County 54th District Judge Matt Johnson read them the Allen Charge, which encourages a deadlocked jury to continue deliberating until it reaches a verdict.

"If the jury finds itself unable to arrive at a unanimous verdict on a count, it will be necessary for the court to declare a mistrial on set counts or counts and discharge the jury. The indictment in the unresolved counts will still be pending. It is reasonable to assume the case will be tried again before another jury at some future time." Johnson responded in a written note.

Gotro objected to the Allen Charge saying if a new jury came in, in the case of a mistrial, they would hear different evidence.

"I don't believe is an accurate statement given the late disclosures received during the course of this trial and my absolute inability to use that evidence to prepare for trial," Gotro said. "I believe that a second jury will hear a very different set of evidence."

The jury deliberated for more than nine hours on Thursday before they were sequestered in an area hotel.

One of the notes the jury sent to the judge on Thursday night, mentioned they were deadlocked in all three counts and that Mr. P. had previous experience with the Cossacks and that his opinion would not change because of it.

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