Jurors struggle with verdict in Nestande trial - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

Jurors struggle with verdict in Nestande trial

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Jurors in the fatal hit-and-run trial of former Capitol staffer Gabrielle Nestande returned for a third day of deliberations Thursday morning.

Nestande is on trial for the hit-and-run death of Courtney Griffin.

Jurors are now in their 18th hour of deliberations, which began Tuesday morning. If they are unable to reach a verdict, the judge will declare a mistrial.

At around 3:30 p.m. Wednesday afternoon, Nestande and her attorneys, as well as Courtney Griffin's family, rushed back into the courtroom where the judge announced she had received a note from jurors stating that they were having a difficult time deciding on the charges.

Those charges Nestande faces include intoxication manslaughter, manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide and failure to stop and render aid.

The judge brought the jury into the courtroom and encouraged them to reach a decision. She also spoke about the alternative...a mistrial.

She cautioned that another jury will go through the same difficult decision process and encouraged them to work through it.

"The questions before any future jury will likely be the same questions confronting you. And there is no reason to believe another jury will find these questions any easier to decide than you have found them,' said Judge Karen Sage.

As the hours drag on, the family of Courtney Griffin are maintaining their hope that the jury will reach a verdict.

"It sounds like the jury is really taking their time and looking at the evidence and that's what we want them to do and we want them to come back with the right verdict and so we're just waiting around. It's harder on ourselves sitting. We're okay with the wait," said Bart Griffin, the victim's father.

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