Salem Radio Network News Tuesday, March 21, 2023


Jury weighing death penalty for NY bike path attacker tells judge it can’t reach unanimous decision

By Luc Cohen

NEW YORK (Reuters) -The jury weighing the death penalty for Sayfullo Saipov, the man convicted of killing eight people in an attack on a Manhattan bike path in 2017, told the judge overseeing the case on Monday it was unable to reach a unanimous decision.

A unanimous decision is required to impose the death penalty, but it was not clear if the deliberations were complete.

U.S. District Judge Vernon Broderick instructed prosecutors and defense lawyers to confer about how he should respond to the note from the jury, which he read aloud in federal court in Manhattan.

Judges sometimes instruct juries that initially struggle to reach a verdict to continue deliberating.

If the jury declines to impose the death penalty, Saipov would be sentenced to life in prison without parole. He would spend the sentence at Colorado’s Supermax facility, the most secure U.S. federal prison.

Saipov, a 35-year-old Uzbek national, was convicted in January by a federal jury of committing murder with a goal of joining Islamic State, or ISIS, a group the United States has designated a “terrorist” organization. The same jury has been reconvened to consider Saipov’s punishment.

Saipov’s case is the first federal death penalty trial since President Joe Biden, a Democrat, took office in 2021 after pledging to abolish capital punishment during his campaign.

(Reporting by Luc Cohen in New YorkEditing by Chris Reese, Chizu Nomiyama and Leslie Adler)


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