Jury note says Young case split was 8 to 4

Jason Young listens to testimony in a Wake County courtroom.

June 28, 2011 10:37:57 AM PDT
A handwritten note from the Jason Young jury says it was split eight to four in favor of acquittal.

The note from the foreperson to Judge Donald Stephens says that the "situation we find ourselves in leads us to believe that we will make no further headway in this matter."

Judge Stephens declared a mistrial in the Young case Monday after receiving the note. Earlier, the jury had said it was split six to six.

It wasn't immediately clear if prosecutors would seek a retrial. Young's attorneys said they would not seek to have him released on bail straight away. Young, 37, has been in jail since his 2009 arrest.

Judge Stephens said the case would be re-calendared and the next status hearing is scheduled for July 20. He said any motions on Young's status could be addressed then.

Neither Young's family or Michelle Young's family had any comment.

Jason Young claims he was away on a business trip in Virginia on November 3, 2006 when his wife Michelle was beaten to death in their south Raleigh home.

Michelle was 5-months pregnant when she died. Prosecutors said the couple had a long history of marital problems and Jason had affairs with multiple women in the months before the murder. The Young's daughter Cassidy - who was 2-years-old at the time - was found unhurt next to her mother's corpse. Investigators said her tiny bloody footprints were tracked throughout the upstairs floor of the home.

In an unusual move for a murder trial, Jason took the witness stand in his own defense. He admitted he was a less than perfect husband, but said he was working on his marriage and didn't kill his wife. He said he was asleep in a Hampton Inn in Hillsville, Virginia when the murder occurred.

Prosecutors said he had time to drive back to Raleigh, kill Michelle, and then drive back again. They put a clerk from a gas station between Hillsville and Raleigh on the stand who claimed Young drove up in his white SUV and cursed at her when she refused to turn on the pump unless he prepaid. Young's lawyers tried to challenge the woman's credibility, saying she couldn't identify him before detectives show her a picture.

Investigators said a side door at the Hampton Inn where Young stayed was left propped open and a security camera in a stairwell was also unplugged.

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