Home USA News The trial for the murder of Dorcus Allen has been announced

The trial for the murder of Dorcus Allen has been announced


The second manslaughter trial of a man accused of being the hit-and-run driver in a 2009 shooting that killed four Lakewood police officers was thrown out of court Thursday.

A Pierce County jury deliberated for more than a week on whether 51-year-old Dorcus Allen was guilty of four counts of first-degree murder for driving his friend and employer Maurice Clemons to and from the Parkland coffee shop where Clemons shot himself. destroyed police officers. It looks like they couldn’t come to a conclusion.

A spokesman for the Pierce County government confirmed that the mistrial was declared because there was no jury trial.

Probably, Elena is waiting for another trial. It is not clear when it will start. Presiding Judge Edmund Murphy scheduled a retrial for January 9. Adam Faber, a spokesman for the Pierce County Prosecutor’s Office, said he was confident the trial would begin that day.

Phone calls to attorneys in the case were not returned Thursday afternoon. The News Tribune could not reach the attorneys for comment.

The defendant was first convicted in 2011 for being a hit-and-run driver and received 420 years in prison. But in 2015, the state Supreme Court ruled that he did not receive a fair trial. A deputy prosecutor committed misconduct during closing arguments, repeatedly saying Allen “should have known” that Clemons intended to kill the officers. The superior court ruled that this was an incorrect statement of law, and the case was remanded to the Superior Court of Pierce County for a new trial.

That new court began on October 3, and over the course of four weeks, prosecutors used a variety of evidence to convince jurors that the defendant, along with Clemmons, planned to kill random police officers, leading to the death of Sgt. Mark Renninger and officers Tina Griswold, Gregory Richards and Ronald Owens.

Attorneys presented tapes of phone conversations between Allen and Clemmons and a GPS device found in Allen’s garage that Clemmons used in an earlier botched plot to lure cops to his home.

During closing arguments, Deputy District Attorney James Schacht also pointed to inconsistencies between Allen’s statements to police and his testimony on the stand, as well as the testimony of one of Clemmons’ relatives regarding a Thanksgiving dinner attended by Allen and Clemmons, as evidence that the defendant knew what the plan was and took steps to hide his involvement.

Allen’s defense attorneys argued that prosecutors relied on suspicion and innuendo to convince jurors to find the defendant guilty.

The phone records between Allen and Clemmons did not contain actual conversations between the men, and attorney Mary High noted that the calls were on work phones, suggesting they may have discussed whether a job was available for Clemmons. landscaping business.

This story was originally published November 10, 2022 at 3:39 p.m.

Peter Talbot covers crime and breaking news in Pierce County. He started at The News Tribune in 2021. Prior to that, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Indiana University. During college, he worked as an intern at NPR in Washington, DC. He also interned at the Oregonian and the Tampa Bay Times.

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