The trial of convicted sex offender Andrew Allmon, 55, of Cortez, ended Friday in a mistrial after jurors deliberated for more than 10 hours.
The jury deadlocked on charges that Allmon sexually assaulted an 8-year-old girl on June 17, according to District Attorney Will Furse.
The jury also found Allmon not guilty on two charges of sexual abuse against a child.
Furse said he plans to request a retrial on Jan. 20.
“After consulting with the victim’s family, the District Attorney’s Office will be proceeding with a retrial. We feel it important for all involved that a jury reach a verdict in this case,” Furse said.
In a half-hour closing statement to jurors on Thursday, Jan. 15, Furse utilized a PowerPoint presentation, stating the defendant sexually abused the alleged victim “not once, not twice, but three times.”
“Ladies and gentleman, Andrew Allmon is guilty of sexual assault,” said Furse.
In her half-hour closing statement to jurors, public defender Amy R. Smith stated that the parents of the alleged victim instructed the child to fabricate the allegations against her client.
“Ladies and gentlemen, this is a case of false accusations,” said Smith.
Furse countered that the evidence presented at trial proved the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. He added that the victim’s family had no motivation to make up allegations.
“What are they gaining?” posed Furse.
Smith argued the victim’s family was deeply troubled, and the parents utilized pressure and intimidation to force the child to lie. She said evidence showed the family had filed false accusations with authorities before.
“This has snowballed out of control,” said Smith.
Prior to closing statements, Chief District Court Judge Doug Walker gave jurors a score of final directives. Instructions included the prohibition of cell phone use during deliberations, legal definition of sexual assault on a child, limitations of the evidence connected to the suspect’s prior criminal history and how to complete six different verdict forms.
Randomly selected by the defendant prior to the start of trial proceedings last week, alternate jurors No. 3 and No. 9 were temporarily excused prior to deliberations. Walker told the alternates not to discuss the case, because they could still be called in to help decide the case if another juror was unable to continue.
A jury of five women and seven men retired to the jury room to begin deliberations at 11:40 a.m. on Thursday.
According to testimony, the suspect invited a husband and wife along with their daughters, then 15, 13 and 8, to live with him in April 2013 after they had been evicted. The mother said Allmon “was good to the family.”
“We trusted him,” the mother testified.
On cross-examination, the mother admitted that her youngest daughter initially denied the allegations of sexual assault, and added that she was never alarmed by a change in the child’s behavior.
A medical expert who examined the alleged victim two days after the June 2013 incident said he didn’t find any signs of injury.
The alleged victim, now a 10-year-old fourth-grader, showed little emotion from the witness stand when describing the alleged sexual abuse. She told jurors that she rehearsed her testimony with prosecutors.
At times appearing disinterested in the proceedings, the alleged victim’s older sister – the only eyewitness to the alleged crimes – also testified. Stating that she had tried to erase the incident from her memory, the sister said she didn’t “exactly remember” what happened.
“I’m ready for this to be over,” she said from the witness stand.
Allmon opted not to testify on his behalf. A Montezuma County grand jury previously indicted the suspect on nine counts of child sexual assault and four drug offenses.