A second trial has been set for a Rapid City woman after a jury couldn't decide whether she was guilty of murdering her nephew or acted in self defense.
Lorraine Swallow, 33, will be tried again Sept. 9-13 after being charged with second-degree murder for allegedly fatally stabbing 28-year-old Tyrell Bull Bear early in the morning of Dec. 8, 2018.
After hearing four days of testimony last week and deliberating for about nine hours, a 12-person jury couldn't reach a unanimous verdict. Defendants can be tried again in such cases; double jeopardy only applies when someone is found innocent.
"It's telling if the evidence wasn't strong enough" for a conviction, Angela Colbath, Swallow's defense lawyer, said during a Thursday bond hearing at the state court in Rapid City.
Colbath asked Judge Matt Brown to consider the lack of conviction and lower her client's $100,000 cash/surety bond. She said her client could stay with her father at his home in Porcupine or at another safe home in Rapid City. She asked for the soonest possible trial date if bond isn't lowered.
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Prosecutor Stacy Wickre asked Brown to keep the current bond. She said no one knows what the split verdict was or why there wasn't a unanimous decision.
"I believe the state's case is very strong," she said.
Wickre asked Brown to consider the seriousness of Swallow's charge and the chance that she may flee to avoid serving a sentence of life without parole if convicted.
Brown agreed with Wickre's argument about flight risk and kept Swallow's bond as is. He said he would work to find an earlier trial date but his schedule is currently booked.