Mistrial declared for ex-Madison teacher accused of shooting daughter's boyfriend
HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - A mistrial has been declared in the trial of former Madison teacher accused of shooting his teenage daughter's boyfriend.
Both sides said it was a difficult and emotional case. After the mistrial, the jury was dismissed Thursday afternoon.
"My sense, and I don't know, is that it was close in the middle like six-six, five-seven, or four-eight and I don't know which way the four and the eights go," said defense attorney Bruce Gardner.
"I'm not necessarily surprised. This was a very difficult case. Anytime you deal with the issue of self defense, it is a very complicated part of the law. And in this case, the facts are even more complicated because you had a very emotional issue of the dynamic of the family and the circumstances under which this case came about," said prosecuting attorney Tim Gann.
No retrial has been announced.
"Generally retrials don't go particularly well for either side. So, it will get set for trial, but perhaps there may be along the way hopefully some way we can resolve this shy of that," Gardner said.
In November 2015, the Madison County Sheriff's Office and Huntsville police responded to a shooting in Harvest at a home on Thunderbird Drive at around 3 a.m. Prosecutors say 50-year-old Fitzgerald McQueen caught the teenager in the closet of his daughter's bedroom at 3 a.m. and then shot the teen.
Officials say they found an 18-year-old man shot in the chest at a home on the street. Investigators arrested McQueen for first-degree assault.
The victim, Jaizon Edwards was taken to Huntsville Hospital for his injuries. According to his mother, Edwards was expected to make a full recovery.
Investigators said the victim is also an acquaintance of the McQueen family and was involved in a dating relationship with McQueen's daughter.
"We see this scenario play out constantly in Madison County. And it's usually taken care of with a phone call to the parents. In this case, there was an extreme act done. That we feel was unjustified and that's why we brought the case. This is not an unusual circumstance that plays out when you have teenagers. This is not the first time this has happened. But it is the first time the dad has shot the boyfriend," Gann said.
On Wednesday, McQueen testified he thought his daughter was being raped.
The defense told jurors McQueen acted in self-defense. Prosecutors say the victim was unarmed and McQueen overreacted.
On Thursday afternoon the judge sent the jury out for more deliberations due to the different views and opinions from the jurors and not enough evidence leaning toward one verdict or the other.
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