Judge declares mistrial in rape case
by Brande Poulnot
Aug 20, 2010 | 2538 views | 0 0 comments | 11 11 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Superior Court Judge Shepherd Howell declared a mistrial Thursday in a jury trial that began Monday. Jurors could not reach a unanimous decision in the case of 23-year-old Michael Allen Bennett Jr., who was accused of raping a 19-year-old woman at an Acworth home in November 2007.

After about an hour and a half of deliberation Thursday following more than three and a half hours of the same Wednesday, jurors again announced they could not unanimously decide if sex between Bennett and the victim was consensual.

Bennett's attorneys had argued the alleged victim was coherent and granted consent for sex, even though she, her boyfriend and Bennett had been drinking heavily and the woman fell ill.

Prosecuting attorney Suzanne Brookshire had argued Bennett took advantage of the woman, who said she awoke with Bennett on top of her. It is unclear if Bennett will be retried.

Wednesday jurors were stuck on an 8 to 4 vote and the jury was still split after Thursday's deliberations.