Second jury discharged

For the second time in four days, Mr. Justice Alex Henderson discharged a jury that had been selected to hear an assault case.

The second group of jurors was discharged on Thursday morning after having been chosen in a daylong process on Wednesday.

The second selection was necessary because of alleged inappropriate communication between a defendant and a juror from the first panel (Caymanian Compass, 31 March).

This time, the judge said, one of the jurors had written a letter to the court saying she was unable to judge the case with the objectivity required of a juror.

She said she had formed an opinion regarding the guilt or innocence of one of the four defendants and that would stand in the way of her acting as a juror.

‘To put it mildly, this is something that should have been brought to my attention before you were sworn,’ he told the juror in front of the rest of the panel.

Mr. Justice Henderson also referred to the difficultly there had been in selecting a jury for the case, which involves four defendants. He said there had been objections to the procedure followed and he thought there was some substance in those objections.

The combination of circumstances drove him reluctantly to the conclusion that the entire jury should be discharged, he said. He thanked the men and women for their participation thus far.

He regretted that the trial could not be completed with their continued participation, but he considered that the interests of justice required him to take the step he had.

It is understood that the court staff are working to ensure that a sufficiently large number of potential jurors attends on Wednesday.

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