Mistrial declared in officer death after juror claims religious beliefs prevented her from judging another

Adrian Morris

Officer Adrian Morris

A mistrial has been declared in the case of a man accused of leading a high-speed chase that killed a Prince George’s County police officer.

Kevon Neal

Kevon Neal

The manslaughter trial for Kevon Neal was upended after one of the juror’s sent an email to the judge Wednesday night saying she could she could not judge another person because of their religious beliefs. The note had been sent to the judge after closing arguments and while the jury was still in deliberation.

On Thurday, in a discussion between that juror, the judge and attorneys from both sides, the juror also claimed that the court “did not have a dog in this fight” and therefore could not pass judgment on Neal, according to WJLA.

Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Angela Alsobrooks called the juror’s actions a “disgraceful.”

“The juror simply did not take her role seriously,” Alsobrooks said. “Our citizens deserve to have safe communities and one of the ways we ensure that happens is for them to sit as jurors.”

Neal was on trail for the manslaughter death of 23-year-old Officer Adrian Morris, 23, who was killed in a high-speed chase on the Capital Beltway. The officer and his partner were reviewing surveillance video of a purse-snatching at a gas station when a worker noticed the same suspects had returned in the same vehicle, and the officers gave chase.

A hearing has been scheduled for next month to determine the date for a new trial. One is expected for March or April, officials said.

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