Sacto 9-1-1
May 6, 2013
Mistrial declared in 2011 gang murder trial

After a Sacramento Superior Court jury failed to reach a verdict today in the murder trial of Marquis Pierre Young, Judge Raoul M. Thorbourne declared a mistrial.

Jurors convicted Young of being an ex-felon in possession of a gun, however, and Thorbourne scheduled his sentencing for June 7. With the jury's vote running 9-3 for acquittal on the murder count, Deputy District Attorney Leland Washington did not say whether prosecutors will retry Young. Thorbourne scheduled a May 17 hearing for further proceedings in the murder case.

Judge Thorbourne also declared a mistrial on the jury's inability to reach a verdict on a third count of assault with a firearm. The vote was 7-5 for acquittal on that count, the jury foreman told the judge.

Neither Washington not defense attorney Frances Huey would comment on the outcome of the trial today.

Young, 30, was charged with murder on an accusation that he supplied a gun to the accused shooter in the 1:20 a.m., April 17, 2011, killing of Jesse Fowler, 29, outside Warner's Rendezvous Lounge near Florin Road and the 99 Freeway.

The purported gunman in the case, Allen Benzler, 20, last month was declared incompetent to stand trial. Benzler has since been committed to a state hospital, according to court records.

Charges have been dismissed against two other men, Israel Washington, 39, and Anthony Joaquin Sanchez, 28, who were accused of assault with a firearm in what authorities described as a gang shootout outside the club.

Jurors said after the verdict that they could not determine from the evidence whether the gun that authorities say Young provided to Benzler was the one that fired the bullet that killed Fowler.

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