Judge declares mistrial in Karen Read murder case after jury says it’s still undecided

The judge in the Karen Read murder trial has declared a mistrial after the jury said it was unable to reach a unanimous consensus on the fifth day of deliberations Monday.

Read was charged with killing her boyfriend, Boston police officer John O’Keefe, in January 2022.

Prosecutors allege she hit O’Keefe with her car and left him to die in the middle of a snowstorm after the two got into an argument earlier in the day. Read has strenuously denied the allegations, and her lawyers alleged that a fellow police officer was involved in O’Keefe’s death and colluded with others in a cover-up.

PHOTO: The murder trial for Karen Read continues in Norfolk Superior Court, June 17, 2024, in Dedham, Mass.

The murder trial for Karen Read continues in Norfolk Superior Court, June 17, 2024, in Dedham, Mass.

Pat Greenhouse/The Boston Globe via AP, Pool

She had pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder, manslaughter while operating a motor vehicle under the influence and leaving the scene of a fatal accident.

After jurors told the court earlier Monday they had been unable to attain a consensus, Judge Beverly Cannone read them the Tuey-Rodriguez instructions and had them return to their deliberations. Per Tuey-Rogriguez, the judge would be forced to declare a mistrial if the jury returned once more undecided.

In a note to the court Monday afternoon, the jury said it was unable to reach a unanimous consensus despite an exhaustive deliberation process.

“Despite our rigorous efforts we find ourselves at an impasse,” the note, as read aloud by Cannone, said. “The deep division is not due to lack of consideration but to a severe adherence to our personal beliefs and moral compasses. To continue to deliberate would be futile.”

In response, Cannone stated, “Your service is complete. I am declaring a mistrial.”

A status conference has been scheduled for July 22 in the case.

PHOTO: Karen Read looks back during her murder trial at Norfolk County Superior Court in Dedham, Mass., June 20, 2024.

Karen Read looks back during her murder trial at Norfolk County Superior Court in Dedham, Mass., June 20, 2024.

David Mcglynn/AP

The Norfolk District Attorney’s Office said it plans to retry the case.

“First, we thank the O’Keefe family for their commitment and dedication to this long process,” the district attorney’s office said in a statement. “They maintained sight of the true core of this case — to find justice for John O’Keefe.”

Outside the courthouse in Dedham, Massachusetts, Read’s attorneys said they will not stop fighting.

“Folks, this is what it looks like when you bring false charges against an innocent person,” her attorney, Alan Jackson, told reporters. “The commonwealth did their worst. They brought the weight of the state based on spurious charges, based on compromised investigation and investigators and compromised witnesses. This is what it looks like. And guess what? They failed. They failed miserably, and they’ll continue to fail.”

First appeared on abcnews.go.com

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