Jurors Split 11-1 in Emery Kauanui Slaying Case

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Seth Cravens
A judge ordered jurors into further deliberations Monday after they were unable to reach a verdict on a charge of second-degree murder against a man accused of throwing a fatal punch at a professional surfer.

Seth Cravens (pictured above), 22, is accused of delivering the punch that killed professional surfer Emery Kauanui, 24, in May 2007.  Cravens allegedly sucker-punched Kauanui, who fell, hit his head and died in the hospital a few days later.

All sides were called into court Monday at 1:30 p.m. after Judge John Einhorn received a note from jurors.  He said it read, “We are unable to reach a unanimous decision on count 12.”

The prosecution urged the judge to provide jurors with further instructions.

“This is a significant case in regards to the charge.  I feel if we give them the additional tools that they need that they may be able to resolve this case,” said prosecutor Sophia Roach.

The judge polled the foreperson, who said the panel was split 11-1 on count 12.  The juror stated they had taken four votes on the charge and were unable to reach a unanimous verdict.

The judge then polled each juror, asking if further instruction, additional deliberations, or reviewing or rereading of any of the testimony or exhibits would increase the likelihood of a verdict.   Three of them said it would help.

Einhorn sealed the verdicts that had been reached on counts one through 11 against Cravens.  Jurors were then instructed to continue to deliberate and submit questions in areas where they wanted further instruction.

Cravens faces 15 years to life in prison if convicted.  If Cravens is acquitted, the jury may consider lesser offenses of voluntary and involuntary manslaughter.

Four co-defendants — Orlando Osuna, Eric House, Matthew Yanke and Hank Hendricks — pleaded guilty to lesser charges in the death of Kauanui and were sentenced in September.

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