Lights & Sirens

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Curious bunch, that Tacoma Mall shooting jury

Post by Adam Lynn / The News Tribune on Sep. 28, 2007 at 12:30 pm |
September 28, 2007 12:30 pm

The jury foreman sent three questions to Judge Linda Lee this morning, the first one only a half hour after jurors convened for the day.

They wanted to know:

&bull More information about Dominick Maldonado’s previous criminal convictions.

&bull Whether they could get a legal definition of “deadly force.”

&bull If they could review the transcribed testimony of 13-year-old Phi-ho Phan, who was one of four people held hostage by Maldonado in the Sam Goody store. They apparently were looking for information on “deadly force” in there, too.

Judge Linda Lee, after consulting with the attorneys in the case, bascially sent back three no’s.

It’s impossible to know what the jurors are thinking as they deliberate, but I don’t see a good reason for them to be asking these particular questions.

The only way Maldonado’s criminal history plays into things is that his previous conviction for second-degree burglary prohibits him from possessing a firearm. The prosecution and defense stipulated to that conviction during the trial, so the two unlawful possession of a firearm charges against him in the mall shooting should be a slam dunk.

Regarding the deadly force questions: Maldonado is charged with first-degree kidnapping in the case of Phi-ho. The legal definition of that charge doesn’t include any mention of deadly force from my reading of it.

So, I’m at a loss.

But I’m not a juror or a lawyer.

Hopefully, all will be revealed in the end.

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