Supreme Court Justice Michael Aloise has ordered all sides involved in the prosecution of Chanel Lewis for the murder of Karina Vetrano to appear in his courtroom in Queens tomorrow to discuss how the case will proceed
There has been little >>> NEWS <<< in the case since Judge Aloise, in a very controversial ruling (one of very many in the case), declared a mistrial on November 20, 2018..... What was reported at the time suggested that the trial judge rushed to his ruling upon the defense motion without giving the jury what is called an "Allen Charge" --- urging the jury to renew deliberations and to cooperate in order to reach a verdict based upon the evidence presented to them. However, it was only later reported that the Queens County prosecutor, a very senior ADA in the Office of the Queens DA >>> DID NOT OPPOSE <<< the defense motion for a mistrial
THAT LEAVES A RATHER OBVIOUS QUESTION GOING FORWARD --- WHY DID THE PROSECUTION DECIDE TO THROW IN ITS CARDS AFTER CHANEL LEWIS' DEFENSE TEAM IN ESSENCE SAID >>> IT LOOKS LIKE THE GAME IS UP <<<
RIGHT NOW, IT'S UP TO JUDGE ALOISE TO SEE WHEN AND IF HE'LL RE-DEAL THE CARDS IN THIS CASE
".... A judge declared a mistrial late Tuesday in the murder trial of Chanel Lewis, the man accused of killing Queens jogger Karina Vetrano in 2016.... Following a day and a half of deliberations, the jury sent a note to the judge saying it was hopelessly deadlocked and had exhausted all thoughts and opinions.... The victim’s family was stunned, with the judge announcing the hung jury to a near-silent courtroom. Several were in tears as they were escorted out.... Lewis, 22, is accused of killing the 30-year-old Vetrano while she was jogging in Spring Creek Park near her family’s home in Howard Beach. If found guilty, he faces up to life in prison. His attorney says the declaration goes to show the evidence presented was far from a slam dunk.... [various details about the history of the case and what was presented at the trial].... Prosecutors say they’ll move to retry the case following the judge’s decision. Lewis will remain in jail as the case is adjourned until January 22nd, when the two sides will reconvene and figure out how to proceed"
(See "Judge Declares Mistrial In Queens Jogger Karina Vetrano’s Murder Case" by Jessica Layton & CBS Staff Writers, 11/20/18, CBS2/ WYLI1055/ CBS News NY [https://newyork.cbslocal.com/2018/11/20/chanel-lewis-karina-vetrano-mistrial/]).
TWO WEEKS LATER, THE NY TIMES PAINTED A COMPLETELY DIFFERENT PICTURE THAN ALMOST ALL OF THE PRIOR REPORTSHere's some of what the New York Times said a couple of weeks after the declaration of a mistrial by Justice Aloise:
".... The Queens district attorney’s office believed its case against Chanel Lewis was airtight. Prosecutors had a videotape of Mr. Lewis confessing to the murder of 30-year-old Karina Vetrano two years ago as she jogged through a Queens park. Police had also found his DNA on her body. But after a two-week trial last month, the unexpected happened: The jury remained hopelessly deadlocked after only two days of deliberations. The judge quickly declared a mistrial. Prosecutors did not object.... Usually, a videotaped admission of guilt coupled with DNA evidence almost guarantees a conviction. But the Vetrano case demonstrated that jurors are starting to doubt such evidence.... Over the last 20 years, several cases involving false confessions have surfaced, and DNA evidence, while seemingly convincing, has not always persuaded jurors who have concerns about police integrity. The skepticism is higher in minority communities where relationships with law enforcement have been strained, legal experts said...." (See "The Murder Case Seemed Solid. Here’s Why Jurors Would Not Convict" by Jan Ransom, 12/5/18, New York Times/ New York [https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/05/nyregion/queens-jogger-trial.html]).