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Christina Gonzalez, myFOXla dot com: Brandon McInerney Trial Jurors Talk about the Case

Brandon McInerney Trial Jurors Talk about the Case
by Christina Gonzalez & Web Staff, September 15, 2011

text of video:

Chatsworth – Six days of deliberations and jurors could not decide if the death of 15-year old Larry Kking was murder or manslaughter. Now, two of the jurors in the trial of Brandon McInerney are speaking out.

Christina Gonzalez has the story in the video report. It’s something you’ll see only here. [chers—these people at myFOXla speak as if they owned the news, but then they post the text of the video (thank you) which is what i like anyway. commodification of the news is deep and tricksy in addition to boilerplate ironic. —rk]

Story Script:

For the first time, jurors in the trial of a murdered gay student talked about the deliberations that led to a mistrial.

The jury deadlocked 7-to-5 in favor of manslaughter after hearing eight weeks of testimony and close to one hundred witnesses.

Karen McElhaney, Juror
We all lost sleep over it. We all thought about it first thing in the morning when we got up. I am going to start crying.

Jurors in the trial of Brandon McInerney, who faced life in prison for the shooting death of gay 15 year old classmate Larry King, when Brandon himself was fourteen. We met at the Chatsworth Courthouse where the trial ended in a hung jury.

Rosalie Black, Alternate Juror
We were very divided. Polar opposites. The people who believed one way were passionate. They were equally as passionate on the other side even before we went into deliberations in my opinion.

Rosalie Black was an alternate juror. Karen McElhaney deliberated with the other 12.

The enormity and the severity got us and there were a lot of tears there was a lot of “Oh my gosh. This is it. We have to make a decision. We have to decide this child’s fate and we can’t forget about the victim either.”

Both were middle schoolers. Prosecutiors said Brandon was a white supremacist gang member who killed Larry because he was gay. The defense said Brandon, who grew up in a violent abusive home, snapped at Larry’s sexual advances.

Karen McElhaney, Juror
I saw a very damaged young man. I saw I think he is a very intelligent young man and I think he would give anything to take that day back.

Rosalie Black, Alternate Juror
I don’t want to discount the young man who died, don’t ever want to discount that but I also don’t think Brandon was an adult and should be tried as an adult.

Karen McElhaney, Juror
Yes he knows right from wrong but he was only fourteen. His coping skills… 14-year-olds especially young men are not known for their good decision making.

Rosalie Black, Alternate Juror
It’s impossible (to leave all our personal stuff outside that courtroom). For the most part, you have to make your decision on the evidence provided as they instructed us, but you can’t help but to notice this kid and you can interpret the evidence in so many different ways.

Karen McElhaney, Juror
It’s very emotional. A child died. Another one… his life is over basically. Let’s face it. It’s such a horrible thing, especially with all the evidence testimony, it could have been prevented thats the worst part.

They are considering retrying the case.

Rosalie Black, Alternate Juror
What a travesty. It’s a tragedy to do that. What are they going to accomplish?

Karen McElhaney, Juror
There were more people who were thinking voluntary manslaughter than murder one or murder two, the evidence is still the same.

Rosalie Black, Alternate Juror
At the end nobody won. Nobody won.

The decision on retrying the case is expected on October 5th.

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