Senior Smart Aleck
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Richmond, Virginia
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Re: HMS Bounty in trouble...
Of course, the verdict must be unanimous in a criminal case and the judge will admonish the jury to reach a verdict and keep sending them back until it becomes clear there is a hung jury.
But, the judge does not tell you that he can then properly declare a mistrial and the double jeopardy clause does not necessarily prevent a re-trial of the accused.
Some jurors are better at reading the demeanor of witnesses and judging their veracity. Sadly, some judges are no better than the average person, or are worse, even though they are routinely called upon to perform that task.
In this case, however, unlike your jury trial example, the facts are not in dispute. It is simply a matter of whether a reasonably prudent professional skipper would have left port in the circumstances. The exact reason for the sinking becomes irrelevant after the skipper made the decision to leave port.
Last edited by jameswilson29; 12-18-2012 at 02:26 PM.