Karen Read defense: Fourth juror confirms not guilty verdict

Posted at 1:35 PM, July 10, 2024 and last updated 12:46 PM, July 10, 2024

DEDHAM, Mass. (Court TV) — The attorneys for Karen Read now say a fourth juror has approached them to confirm that the jury in her murder trial had reached not guilty verdicts on the two most serious charges.

karen read appears in court

Karen Read watches as jurors are seated in court to continue with deliberations at the trial of Read at Norfolk Superior Court, Friday, June 28, 2024, in Dedham, Mass. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, Pool)

Read was charged with second-degree murder, motor vehicle manslaughter and leaving the scene of a collision causing injury or death for the death of her boyfriend, Boston police officer John O’Keefe. After a trial that spanned more than a month and featured more than 50 witnesses, Judge Beverly Cannone declared a mistrial on July 1 when the jury reported that it was deadlocked.

On Monday, Read’s attorneys, Alan Jackson and David Yanneti, filed a motion claiming that before telling the judge they were deadlocked, the jury had agreed unanimously to find the defendant not guilty of murder and leaving the scene of a deadly crash. Read’s attorneys said they had received “unsolicited communication” from three jurors all saying the same thing.

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In a supplement to the motion filed on Wednesday, Jackson said that he was contacted by a fourth juror who reported that “many of the jurors appeared uncomfortable with how things ended, wondering, Is anyone going to know that we acquitted [Karen Read] on Count 1 and 3? No one ever asked about those counts.”

In an affidavit attached to the supplement, Jackson said that the juror, identified as “Juror D” to protect their anonymity, “told me that he/she decided to reach out to me because he/she was ‘uncomfortable’ with how the trial ended. He/She said that the last day of trial was a ‘whirlwind’ and everything happened fast. … He/She described the end of the trial as very confusing.”

No public poll of the jury was performed in court, which means there is no official record of how the jury or individual jurors were inclined to rule. Despite that, Read’s attorneys have maintained that because the jurors who contacted them say they were unanimous in their finding that she was not guilty on two counts, “double jeopardy” protections should be in place that would prevent her from being prosecuted for the crimes again.

The Norfolk County District Attorney’s Office, which prosecuted the case, has not filed an official response to the motion. The parties are due back in court on July 22 to discuss the next steps in the case.