Jury in Ross Harris murder trial sent home without reaching verdict


Jurors in the hot-car murder trial on Tuesday were dismissed for the afternoon after deliberating almost three hours without reaching a verdict.

Judge Mary Staley Clark had already arranged to give the six-man, six-woman jury the afternoon off so they could cast their ballots on Election Day. They will return again Wednesday morning.

Nearly two months after reporting for jury duty, the jurors finally began deliberations Tuesday morning. Shortly after 9:30 a.m., court officials hauled boxes of roughly 1,150 pieces of evidence for them to start perusing and get down to work deciding Harris’ fate.

They were also presented with the car seat where 22-month-old Cooper Harris died after spending seven hours in the back seat of his father’s hot SUV on June 18, 2014. The jury is being asked to decide whether the child’s death was an accident or intended.

Harris is charged with malice murder, two counts of felony murder, first-degree cruelty to children, second-degree cruelty to children, sexual exploitation of children and two counts of disseminating harmful material to minors.

It didn’t take long before the jury sent a number of questions to the judge as they set about their deliberations.

For example, jurors asked if they could get a transcript of Harris’ interview with Cobb County Police Det. Phil Stoddard just a few hours after Harris pulled his dead son out of his SUV. Staley Clark would not provide the transcript but is going to allow the jury to watch the video of the interview when jurors return in the morning.

Throughout much of the morning, Harris sat at the defense table with his attorneys. He did not appear outwardly nervous and laughed several times during conversations with the lawyers.



Next Up in Local

Happy birthday: Co-workers buy car for fellow employee 
Happy birthday: Co-workers buy car for fellow employee 

A Michigan man will never forget his 19th birthday, thanks to the generosity of his co-workers, WJRT reported. Noah Robinson had been riding his bicycle to work from Saginaw to Kochville Township, pedaling the 6 ½ miles in 45 minutes regardless of the weather conditions. He works in the shipping department at Glastender and lives with his...
Indiana boy carves wooden toys for needy children
Indiana boy carves wooden toys for needy children

A 10-year-old Indiana boy is building toys from scratch to help children in need enjoy the holiday season, WISH reported. Zander Hite of Greenwood took the advice of his grandfather, Darl Hite, who gave the boy a $20 bill last winter and told him to make a difference this holiday season. Zander bought two slabs of wood to build toy cars, WISH...
Former Washington State high school employee accused of rape
Former Washington State high school employee accused of rape

A former employee at a Washington State high school was charged Thursday afternoon with allegedly raping a 15-year-old student. Kristal M. Gamble, 33, was employed as an office assistant at Kent Meridian High School when she allegedly initiated an illegal sexual relationship with a boy last spring. According to Detective Melanie Robinson...
Drug-filled drone crashes at Arizona prison
Drug-filled drone crashes at Arizona prison

A drone crashed at an Arizona prison in September, and officials found drugs and cellphones aboard the vehicle, The Arizona Republic reported.  The drone crashed in a yard accessible only to corrections officers. The Arizona Department of Corrections said Thursday it is still trying to determine who was behind the delivery Sept. 24 delivery...
Cleveland zoo shows off new otter pups
Cleveland zoo shows off new otter pups

Three male otter pups made their public debut at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo on Friday, WKYC reported. Zoo officials said the pups were born on Sept. 24 to Bitzy and Kibble. Baby otters are born with their eyes closed and need a few weeks to learn how to swim, meaning they'll be ready to join their parents, Bitzy and Kibble, on exhibit in The...
More Stories