AP080528038872A Montana prosecutor could not seat a jury to try an accused drug dealer last week because the jury pool was so opposed to sending someone away to prison for possessing small amounts of marijuana, writes Gwen Florio of The Missoulian.
Of the 27 potential jurors, only about five said they would vote to convict a person of marijuana possession. Tiny amounts of the drug were found the home of the defendant, Touray Cornell, but prosecutor Deputy Missoula County Attorney Andrew Paul said Cornell was dealing drugs and is an eight-time felon. The jury didn't know the other charges against Cornell, but their ambivalence toward marijuana charges encouraged Paul to reach a plea deal with the defense, in which Cornell did not have to admit guilt.
Paul called it a "mutiny."
"I think it's going to become increasingly difficult to seat a jury in marijuana cases, at least the ones involving a small amount," the judge in the case, Dusty Deschamps, told the paper.Read More »from Montana jury pool rejects marijuana charges