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Hung Jury In Murder Trial

By LAMECH JOHNSON

Tribune Staff Reporter

ljohnson@tribunemedia.net

A TEENAGER accused of murdering a Chinese restaurant worker outside his home, steps away from the Chinese Embassy, will have to be retried on murder due to a hung jury.

Monday’s 7-5 not guilty verdict, which was not available up to press time, means that 19-year-old Cleophas Clarke, will have to face a new trial on the charge because the verdict did not meet the legal standards.

Justice Bernard Turner said the not guilty verdict would have been acceptable had it been at least two thirds or 8-4.

While the 12-member jury was hung on the charge of murder, they found Clarke not guilty of armed robbery with an 8-4 count.

Clarke, of Yamacraw Beach, faced one charge each of murder and armed robbery, which he denied.

He is accused of killing Chan outside his home on Village Road on January 22, 2012 and robbing him of a Samsung Galaxy SII worth $700.

Mr Chan worked at the VIP Chinese restaurant and was related to one of its owners.

He died a short time after the shooting at Doctor’s hospital.

A Defence Force officer stationed that morning at the embassy claimed he saw a man moving away from the area shortly after the shooting and when attending an identification parade, identified Clarke as the man he saw that morning.

However, Clarke testified under oath that he had been home the entire weekend with his girlfriend.

After nearly two weeks of trial, the jury returned with a hung verdict on the murder charge and not guilty on armed robbery.

No retrial date has been set.

Clarke was represented by lawyer Gregory Hilton.

Anthony Delaney and Ralph Munroe prosecuted for the Crown.

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