SAN JOSE — An emotional showdown within the jury room the place one holdout juror complained of being bullied and refused to deliberate Thursday led to a mistrial within the case of San Jose State’s former head athletic coach accused of sexually assaulting feminine athletes throughout therapy periods.
The overwhelming majority of the jurors, at the least 10 of the 12, believed Scott Shaw was responsible, the jury foreman informed the decide in courtroom Thursday, however one juror particularly — a 53-year-old lady who’s an engineer — didn’t consider federal prosecutors had confirmed their case.
On the lowest level of deliberations, that juror later informed the Bay Space Information Group, one of many jurors had questioned her “psychological state.”
The dramatic and abrupt ending capped a two-week trial and threw into query the legal case on the coronary heart of a 14-year saga that rocked San Jose State College and toppled the varsity’s leaders.
One of many former athletes who testified, former swimmer Caitlin Macky, who was the primary to complain about Shaw in 2009, stated she felt a mixture of “anger and hopelessness” on the mistrial.
“It’s 12-plus years of feelings, coming all the way down to 12 strangers deciding whether or not or not they consider you,” she stated. “It’s very disheartening.”
In an interview with the Bay Space Information Group outdoors the courtroom, the presiding juror, Jeff Pickett, a 48-year-old product marketer, stated it was clear throughout the first 20 minutes of deliberations on Monday that the holdout juror was “intractable.”
“We did some psychological gymnastics and all these issues proper to work round it,” Pickett stated. “However we by no means received to the beginning blocks.”
The jury deadlocked after 4 days of deliberations, which included a number of notes despatched to U.S. District Decide Beth Labson Freeman, who informed the jurors at one level to not “bully or antagonize” one another.
Shaw had pleaded not responsible to 6 federal prices of violating the constitutional proper to “bodily integrity” of 4 former athletes. He confronted as much as six years in jail.
After the decide declared a mistrial Thursday afternoon, Assistant U.S. Legal professional Michael Pitman stated his workplace would overview whether or not to retry the case.
Shaw, 56, who resigned in 2020 a decade after complaints towards him first emerged, hugged his mom when the jury left the courtroom, and the 2 broke into tears. He had declined all interviews for the reason that scandal first broke, however after the jury left the courtroom he informed the Bay Space Information Group he was grateful to his attorneys and pals and “particularly my mother being right here this entire time.”
When requested if he had something to say to the ladies who accused him of sexually assaulting them by inappropriately placing his arms underneath their sports activities bras and underwear, he stated “no.”
Allegations first surfaced towards Shaw in 2009 when a member of the Spartan swim crew informed her coach that she didn’t need to return to Shaw for a shoulder damage: “I don’t really feel like getting felt up.”
The ensuing scandal that turned public in 2020 led to the resignations of the college president and athletic director and greater than $5 million in authorized settlements for greater than two dozen victims in addition to a wholesale restructuring of the varsity’s Title IX workplace.
In a press release Thursday, the college stated that “whereas the shortage of a verdict and definitive decision is disappointing, it doesn’t diminish the ache endured by the survivors. … What’s by no means been in query is the resilience and bravado of those that stood as much as inform their tales.”
Sage Hopkins, the whistleblowing swim coach who saved up a decade-long campaign to oust Shaw and sat within the courtroom practically each day to help the ladies who testified, referred to as the mistrial “disappointing and completely heartbreaking for the victims.” He additionally praised the “bravery of the eight ladies who testified on the trial.”
Over two weeks of testimony, eight former feminine athletes, a lot of whom broke into tears, testified how they have been “internally freaking out,” “frozen” or had “each alarm” going off when Shaw touched them underneath their bras and underwear whereas treating shoulder, again or knee accidents. Different athletic trainers testified they by no means touched feminine athletes the way in which Shaw did, and former male athletes testified that Shaw didn’t come near their nipples or groins to deal with comparable accidents.
From interviews with a number of of the jurors outdoors the courtroom Thursday, it was clear most of them have been ready to search out Shaw responsible on all six counts. On one of many prices, the vote was 11-1, they informed the decide. The remaining 5 prices have been 10-2, when one other feminine juror joined Juror No. 1, the holdout, who spoke to the Bay Space Information Group however requested to not be named.
Tempers received so brief, she stated, that the others informed her they needed her off the jury.
After the decide had admonished the jury to not bully anybody, one of many jury members questioned her psychological state, the girl stated. So she zipped her lips for the remainder of the day. She wasn’t going to provide in, although, she stated, as a result of she didn’t consider she had sufficient particulars of the place Shaw really touched the ladies on their breasts.
The opposite jurors stated that was very clear within the testimony, that he touched at the least one of many ladies’s nipples and areola — and even had the courtroom clerk learn again the whole testimony of one of many former athletes.
Juror No. 8, who didn’t need to be recognized however stated she believed Shaw was responsible, stated testimony from three male athletes who stated Shaw by no means touched them of their personal areas was “fairly damning.”
“A miscarriage of justice occurred right here,” the juror stated.
Macky, now 34 and dealing as a diet coach in San Diego, stated she and her fellow former athletes have been texting one another after the mistrial was introduced, “sharing our love for one another and letting one another know that we’re happy with ourselves for having the braveness to face up.”
She’s particularly enraged, she stated, as a result of not like a few of the faculty officers who resigned over the scandal, “Shaw received off free with out taking any accountability.”
Though this trial is over, she stated, she was already requested late Thursday afternoon by her sufferer advocate whether or not she would testify if there’s a brand new trial.
“I completely would,” Macky stated. “I’ve gone 12 years making an attempt to get the reality on the market about this individual. Definitely I’m not going to cease now.”