Friday, August 29 2014 1:50 PM EDT2014-08-29 17:50:07 GMT
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -
Legal analysts say in a case with so much evidence and testimony it's a good sign there hasn't been a quick verdict in the Christopher Deedy murder trial.
The case was spread out over five weeks so the fact jurors haven't made up their minds after two and a half days of deliberation is understandable. Attorneys say it shows jurors are going over the facts. However if deliberation goes longer than a week it could mean there is disagreement over guilt or innocence.
What's at stake is life in prison for murder or Christopher Deedy walking away a free man. It is certainly a big decision to weigh.
"For the jury to be thorough and conscientious it will take time for them to go through this," said Victor Bakke, attorney.
There is no time limit for jury deliberations. They can take as long as they need. But if all jurors aren't in unanimous agreement they will notify the judge that they are deadlocked. The judge will ask if more time will help. If not a mistrial is called.
"Two days, three days for a trial this long is not really a long time. I would say seven or eight days, if this goes into next week then I think you're probably looking more at a hung jury," said Bakke.
Then the prosecutor will ask for a retrial. The defense often objects because a retrial tends to favor the state. That's because the prosecutor can now dissect what the defendant said and patch up any holes in the case.
"Normally if it's a retrial then you have a second chance," said Don Pacarro, attorney.
"They can call additional witnesses, they can present new evidence and they can also withdraw evidence that they had presented the first time if they thought it didn't pan out the way they wanted it to," said Bakke.
A retrial could take another six months or more to start. For now the focus is on the jurors don't have a lesser charge like manslaughter to fall back on.
"It falls into the all or nothing so the stakes are high," said Pacarro.