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Judge questions jurors about murder trial deliberations

Moore_Ryan-1024x684

Ryan J. Moore, center, appears in Solano County Superior Court on Oct. 26, 2012, charged with the killing of Bettina Brown in Suisun City on night of Oct. 23, 2012. A jury found Moore guilty of second-degree murder. (Brad Zweerink/Daily Republic file)

By
From page A3 | January 15, 2014 |

FAIRFIELD — A former juror in a murder trial confirmed Monday that his guilty verdict was swayed in part by the accused killer not taking the witness stand during his trial.

The juror, one of two jurors questioned by Judge Wendy G. Getty during an hour-long hearing, said he called Getty’s chambers the morning after his vote to find Ryan J. Moore guilty of second-degree murder. The juror said the issue of Moore not testifying on his own behalf came up repeatedly during deliberations and was “a common thread” throughout jury deliberations.

Getty, who could have questioned the pair of former jurors behind closed-doors, opted for an open hearing with each of the jurors sitting in the jury box while answering her questions about what took place during deliberations.

The second juror who Getty questioned said the subject of Moore not testifying had been raised, but only in passing and only for a few seconds.

Getty ended the hearing by reminding the prosecutor and Moore’s defense attorney, Meenha Lee, that two additional jurors would be asked questions at a Jan. 21 hearing.

Moore shot and killed Bettina Brown on the night of Oct. 23, 2012, at his Stellar Way home in Suisun City. Moore had been drinking heavily before he picked up a rifle and shot Brown in the chest.

A two-week jury trial in August 2013 ended with jurors rejecting the claim the shooting had been an accident and found Moore guilty of second-degree murder and firearms charges that would result in a likely 40-years-to-life prison sentence.

Getty told jurors that during their deliberations, they should not consider whether or not Moore testified.

Reach Jess Sullivan at 427-6919 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/jsullivandr.

Jess Sullivan

Jess has covered the criminal justice system in Solano County for several years. He was an embedded reporter in Iraq in 2003.
LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 4 comments

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  • CD BrooksJanuary 15, 2014 - 6:44 am

    HUH? What is the point here?

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • JimboJanuary 21, 2014 - 11:45 pm

    The point here is constitutional rights. The Fifth Amendment protects individuals from being forced to incriminate themselves. Not testifying does not mean guilty.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Hear We GoJanuary 15, 2014 - 9:46 am

    If the Jurors were told that it did not matter if Mr. Moore testified or not, the sentenced should stand. His own Attorney spoke for him/ representing him saying' he( Mr. Moore) did it but it was an accident". Since when is it an accident that one has a loaded fire arm in their home, & they fire & kill someone at point blank range. This was not someone who broke in the home & Mr. Moore was protecting himself, nor was it a stranger. What positive message is being sent if any?. If this man( Mr. Moore) is let go back into the public who's to say he won't do this again & get away with it because he can't be tried for the same crime twice. What does the victims family have to say about this?. Someone lost a Daughter, Sister,a Mother, Aunt, Cousin etc. Is it so easy for a Jury to make a decision & have a " change of heart" & change their mind because they are feeling bad/sorry for the person who committed the crime & not thinking about the person who was killed , or how her family is feeling. When making a decision such as this one Emotions should not be the factor. The facts/ evidence is what one should be basing their decision on. I guess it's like being in the electric chair & just before they flip that switch, there is a " change in heart" by one of the Jurors. What do you do?.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • SPRING RIDERMay 09, 2014 - 1:59 pm

    quit stalling and sentence this fool, i as a family member of the victim will make sure he never gets out

    Reply | Report abusive comment
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