Yesterday I noticed something interesting about this story in our local Dog Trainer. The story reported the 6-6 deadlock in the trial of Jeremy Morse — the white Inglewood police officer accused of using excessive force against black teenager Donovan Jackson. The story discussed how the case has had racial overtones, etc. — but didn’t report how many blacks were on this jury.
In the first trial, it was widely reported that there was only one black on the jury. I don’t know how many blacks were on this jury. But I will make one prediction with confidence: there was more than one black person on this hung jury.
How can I predict this with such confidence? Well, the Dog Trainer has a proud history of sensationalizing race issues, which has the effect of polarizing the community along racial lines. If the paper’s editors could sensationalize this second hung jury by pointing out that there were “no blacks” on the jury, or (like last time around) “only one black” — they would absolutely do so. I therefore conclude that there were at least two black jurors on the jury in this second trial. I guess it doesn’t sound as dramatic to say there were “only two blacks” or “only three blacks” — or however many there were.
The only hint in the story as to the racial makeup of the jury is in a quote from one of the jurors, who reported that the jurors’ decision was not racially motivated: “It wasn’t divided along racial lines at all . . . We want the community to know that it was never black and white.” My guess is that the juror would not have made that comment if there were no blacks on the jury. The comment further indicates that at least one black juror voted to acquit, and at least one non-black juror voted to convict.
I’ll continue to search for information on this. I’m sticking my neck out here, but I am confident I am right. I’ll provide an update if I can find any news outlet that was willing to provide this information. But I want to get my prediction out there, for dramatic effect. And if I turn out to be wrong, I’ll admit it.
UPDATE: The New York Times isn’t saying either.
UPDATE x2: The only thing I can find in the Washington Post is this brief blurb, which says nothing about the racial makeup of the jury.
UPDATE x3: The AP doesn’t report this information either.
UPDATE x4: The only thing I can find in the L.A. Daily News is this two-paragraph blurb which apparently derives from the same AP story I just mentioned.
UPDATE x5: Okay, I found something. Not surprisingly, I have been vindicated. A transcript of a CNN news alert says there were two black people on the jury. (This has been further confirmed by BoiFromTroy in the comments.) No word on how the two black jurors voted. If I learn that, I will provide another update.