Daniel Renteria, the father accused of killing two men after one allegedly molested his 3-year-old son, is getting his day in court.
Again and again.
For the second time in a row, Renteria’s trial ended in a mistrial, thanks to a hung jury.
A date for the third trial, if there is to be one, is scheduled to be set Nov. 8, KGUN-9 reports.
Unless a few mistakes are corrected and some changes made, a third trial seems likely to follow along the same lines.
Hung jury. Mistrial.
When can we just let the guy go already?
Renteria faces two counts of manslaughter in connection with the deaths of Richard Rue Jr., 40, and James “Red” Marschinke, 49, who were shot and killed March 1 while sitting in a front yard in the 5300 block of East 25th Street, Tucson police said.
Renteria initially fled the scene and burned his car, but then turned himself into police the following day.
Mistake number one – confession. Unless you have a lawyer present, which was not made clear in this case, blurting out your guts to authorities is never a good idea.
The first trial, in August, ended with 11 to 1 for conviction. The second trial, which puttered to a close Oct. 15, snapped shut with the jury deadlocked.
The defense argues Renteria shot the men in self-defense, especially since Rue threatened to kill Renteria and his son if he ran to police to report Marschinke’s alleged molestation, the Arizona Daily Star said. The prosecution counters Renteria shot unarmed men and the killings were not justified.
Evidently arguments are not strong – or convincing – enough, although the grand jury was convinced enough to lessen Renteria’s first-degree murder charges to manslaughter.
But it still indicted him for manslaughter.
Although a new jury is introduced with every new trial, all other variables are staying the same.
The most recent trial, which kicked off Oct. 6, did so with “the same judge, the same lawyers, the same witnesses, the same game plan and the same animosity,” ADS reported.
So why expect different results? Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is one of the definitions of our friend insanity.
The animosity noted is not necessarily between the families of the victims and the accused – but between the defense attorney and the judge.
The Star story says the judge was not quick to offer explanations when the defense attorney asked for them. And at one point when the judge got up to leave, the defense pressed him to “make a record” for future reference if the case is ever reviewed. The judge told her to sit down and asked if he needed to call for additional security. The Star then quoted him telling her, “If you insist on this, there will be consequences to you personally.”
Mistake number two – a judge who seems to hate your lawyer.
Trials are supposed to be about bringing out the truth, but they are often more about putting on a show. The best showman, or woman, often gets the win. It has to be tough putting on a good show if the “emcee” doesn’t seem to like you.
Since no one is winning this show, perhaps it’s time for new showmen. Or a new judge. Or a new line of thinking – just scrap the thing altogether.
Of course, we cannot accurately say how we would truly decide unless we were actually on the jury ourselves, but 12 of us may get that chance if Renteria gets yet another day in court.
What do you think?
Should a third trial be set or should Renteria be let go?