Yesterday the jury returned its verdict as to the second defendant facing death in the first capital case to be tried to a penalty phase in Puerto Rico's recent history with the federal death penalty, and the Court then announced the penalty phase verdicts as to both defendants. See previous posts here and here. As to the first defendant, whose penalty phase verdict had been kept sealed pending the presentation of penalty phase evidence and deliberations as to the second defendant, the jury voted to impose a life sentence. As to the second defendant, the jury deadlocked, resulting in an automatic imposition of a life sentence.
The U.S. Attorney in San Juan, Puerto Rico --a Texan-- grabbed the deadlock to make a statement to the effect that no longer should people consider that it is not possible to get a jury to vote for the death penalty in Puerto Rico. One of the defense attorneys answered that only someone from Texas where they execute people regularly could view the results of the case as an indication that the death penalty would be imposed by a jury in Puerto Rico.
Congratulations to Steve Potolsky, Gustavo Del Toro, Don West, and Juan Alvarez!