Mistrial Declared in Karen Read Case After Hung Jury Fails to Reach Verdict


A Massachusetts judge declared a mistrial in the Karen Read case, citing a hung jury that was unable to reach a unanimous verdict after nearly 26 hours of deliberation. The jurors had indicated they were unable to reach a decision multiple times, prompting Judge Beverly Cannone to instruct them to continue deliberating. However, despite multiple attempts, the jury ultimately failed to come to a consensus.

A mistrial resulting from a hung jury could potentially lead to a new trial, although a judge may decide against a retrial under certain circumstances. In the meantime, Read will not be convicted or acquitted, and any existing bond conditions may be reinstated.

From a tactical standpoint, a hung jury can often be seen as a more favorable outcome for the defendant than a conviction, as it eliminates the possibility of a lengthy appeal process and the associated legal costs. In addition, a person who is the subject of a hung jury is still presumed innocent, whereas those who are convicted are not.

Read, a 45-year-old Massachusetts resident, is accused of killing her boyfriend, 46-year-old Boston police officer John O’Keefe, by hitting him with her SUV during a 2022 snowstorm. Prosecutors allege that Read, who has pleaded not guilty to the charges, struck O’Keefe intentionally while making a three-point turn and then drove off, leaving him to suffer from hypothermia and a head injury. Read’s attorneys have argued that the case is the result of a police cover-up, a claim that prosecutors have denied.

Jurors heard evidence suggesting that O’Keefe asked friends whether Read could have hit him with her vehicle, and that the relationship between the two had soured in the months leading up to his death. Read herself told ABC News that she “never harmed a hair on John O’Keefe’s head.”

Katie Smith
Katie Smith
Digital Reporter. Previously, Katie wrote about crime and court for the Northwest Herald in Crystal Lake, Illinois. She’s also reported on similar beats for the Daily Chronicle and the Daily Herald in the Chicago suburbs. Katie earned her journalism degree from Eastern Illinois University, where she also studied English and photojournalism.

Latest stories


Related Articles

Leave a reply

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here
Captcha verification failed!
CAPTCHA user score failed. Please contact us!
Continue on app