Child rape trial ends with jury in deadlock

Rape accused Joel Patterson is likely to face a fresh trial, following an indecisive jury at the Sexual Offences Court in the Demerara Assizes on Wednesday. He was indicted on two counts of raping a then 11-year-old girl in the county of Demerara but after a few days of trial, the jury was deadlocked after hours of deliberation.
This meant that their count was 6-6 but this was unacceptable to the court since at least 10 jurors would be needed to determine innocence or guilt. Justice Jo-Ann Barlow who presided over the matter informed the accused that the Director of Public Prosecutions will have to determine if a new trial will be called.
According to the case facts, Patterson allegedly engaged in sexual penetration with the child under 16 years of age on September 1, 2016, and carried out a similar act on November 14, 2016 in Demerara. Represented by Maxwell McKay, Patterson had plead not guilty to both counts when the matter was called earlier this month. Prosecutors Seeta Bishundial and Tiffini Lyken appeared for the State.