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Jury to resume deliberations Monday in Sean Taylor murder case

Rivera AP

Eric Rivera confessed on video to killing Sean Taylor.  But even that may not be enough to get Rivera convicted.

Juror deliberated the 23-year-old’s fate for three days, nearly six years after someone broke into Taylor’s home and fatally shot him in the leg.  Via David Ovalle of the Miami Herald, the jurors will return on Monday.

The deliberations have been nearly as eventful as the trial.  According to Curt Anderson of the Associated Press, a law book was found on Thursday in the jury room.  Specifically, the 2010 edition of state criminal law and rules was discovered in the jury room, even though the judge had told jurors they must rely only on the 33-page collection of jury instructions.

Rivera’s lawyers opted not to request a mistrial, presumably because Rivera’s lawyers sense that the protracted discussions could result in a favorable verdict.  Per Anderson, the issue is something that could be pursued on appeal.  (I haven’t researched Florida law on this point, but the system generally frowns on the “cake and eat it” approach of ignoring potential juror misconduct when hoping for a win and then complaining about it after the eventual loss.)

Despite confessing in the days after the murder that Rivera shot Taylor, Rivera testified that he never entered the house, and that another member of the group that intended to burglarize the home fired the weapon.  Rivera claims he was coerced into confessing.  (Or maybe he thought they were talking about shoplifting a can of tuna fish.)

Jurors can convict Rivera or first-degree felony murder, second-degree murder, or manslaughter.  Or they can find that the prosecution failed to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Rivera was even in the house, allowing yet another potentially factually guilty person walk out of the courthouse a free man.

Which is still better than having a factually innocent person jailed for life.

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9 Responses to “Jury to resume deliberations Monday in Sean Taylor murder case”
  1. stuartscottslazyeyeball says: Nov 2, 2013 12:58 PM

    Bullet to the back of the head. Problem solved and taxpayers don’t have to fund him playing basketball, watching TV, sleeping and eating in prison for the rest of his life.

  2. spfootballfan says: Nov 2, 2013 1:04 PM

    Confessions really should be inadmissible in court. I mean, lie detectors are inadmissible in court because they only have a 97% success rate, and it seems like every confession is then later called coerced by the defense. Baby Hope murderer says confession was coerced, Eric Rivera. Barry Beach allegedly murdered, but new evidence (enough to order a retrial, which was later thrown out by the Montana Supreme Court) showed a potential coerced confession. We have found out that the entire interrogation process messes with a person’s brain so much that it’s surprising that everyone doesn’t confess. If you tell the police that now confessions don’t matter, I believe it helps find out who is truly innocent or guilty.

  3. jrocknstuff says: Nov 2, 2013 1:33 PM

    Love the My Cousin Vinny reference

  4. filmex2000 says: Nov 2, 2013 1:48 PM

    I didn’t think murder was a crime in Florida.

  5. toonloonboon says: Nov 2, 2013 4:15 PM

    people talk about how bad the redskins defense is, especially their safeties. lets see YOUR team have its best player who had hall of fame talent ( who ed reed said was much better than him) just taken away from it in his prime and see how it affects you.

  6. boyshole25 says: Nov 2, 2013 5:17 PM

    If he does get acquitted he won’t last long in Miami or DC areas so he’d be best served to steer clear

  7. yeevie13 says: Nov 2, 2013 6:13 PM

    toonloonboon says:
    Nov 2, 2013 4:15 PM
    people talk about how bad the redskins defense is, especially their safeties. lets see YOUR team have its best player who had hall of fame talent ( who ed reed said was much better than him) just taken away from it in his prime and see how it affects you.

    ———————————————————————————–
    This article is so not about the impact it had on the redskins defense

  8. strongmackn says: Nov 2, 2013 6:58 PM

    Too bad taylor did have a way to protect himself and his family in his own house. A machete wont win against an armed intruder… and when robbers pull a gun on your family, the cops are 5-10 minutes away… you need a gun. Sad but true its a fact of life.

  9. skinsfantom says: Nov 2, 2013 7:00 PM

    BOIL em in acid and be done. sell tickets, popcorn, cotton candy. that would be justice. this guy was murdered in his bed sleeping with his child. BOIL EM IN ACID.

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