MILWAUKEE — After a day-and-a half of deliberation, a jury on Tuesday, Feb. 27 told Judge T. Christopher Dee they could not reach a verdict in the case involving Brown Deer Police Officer Devon Kraemer, charged in connection with a March 2016 shooting. Dee was not ready to declare a mistrial and told the jurors to return Wednesday morning to continue deliberations.
"We did get a statement from the jury," Judge Dee announced around noon Tuesday.
The letter came on the second day of deliberations and the 12th day of this jury trial.
"'After going over all evidence, we cannot come to a unanimous decision,'" Judge Dee said, reading the letter.
Kraemer is charged with aggravated battery - intent to cause great bodily harm after shooting an unarmed Manuel Burnley Jr. in the back after a dispute over bus fare on March 14, 2016. The jury can also convict Kraemer of a lesser charge, aggravated battery - intent to cause bodily harm.
Surveillance video from the bus shows Kraemer and another officer struggling to arrest Burnley, who caused a scene on a Milwaukee County Transit System bus, and refused to leave. As the officers tried to get Burnley handcuffed, Kraemer shot him once in the back. He lived but lost part of his lung.
While the prosecution asked Dee Tuesday to continue deliberations, Kraemer's lawyers opposed it.
"They've been at it for a day, and a little over, and I also think they're a serious jury and I don't think they're being frivolous about it -- that it's appropriate to give them this instruction," James Griffin, assistant district attorney, said.
"For the record, I'm objecting," Michael Steinle, Kraemer's lawyer said.
Judge Dee called in the jury Tuesday afternoon and told jurors he's not yet ready to declare a mistrial.
"You are not going to be made to agree, nor are you going to be kept out until you do agree. It is your duty to make an honest and sincere attempt to arrive at a verdict," Dee said. "With that being said, I'm sending you back to the jury room."
If there is a hung jury, the Milwaukee County District Attorney's Office will have to decide whether to retry the case.
Deliberations will resume Wednesday morning.