Larissa Schuster's defense team suffers a major setback

April 11, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
Larissa Schuster's legal team will have a harder time trying to convince a judge to give them a new trial. The court asked jurors if they would talk to attorneys about allegations of misconduct but all jurors responded saying no.After the verdict, the men and women who made up the jury stood side by side and affirmed their decision. One unidentified male juror in December 2007 said, "I felt it was a very just process and I think we made the right decision."

They convicted Larissa Schuster of murdering her estranged husband Tim Schuster in the summer of 2003. Investigators found his body stuffed his body in a barrel of acid.

Defense Attorney Roger Nuttall believed jury misconduct occurred. Nuttall wanted to interview jurors to ask detailed questions. But on Friday Judge Wayne Ellison notified the defense no jurors wanted to talk. Nuttall admitted this hurts his efforts to get schuster a new trial. Nuttall said, "That certainly limits the extent of the investigation we've done. But it doesn't destroy the argument because what we already know suggests that there was juror misconduct." Nuttall wants to prove jurors were discussing the case before deliberations which is a violation of court orders.

Prosecutor Dennis Peterson is pleased with the jury's response. Peterson says Tim Schuster's family is eagerly waiting to end this saga. Peterson said, "They're frustrated obviously. I can understand their frustrations. We try to explain it to them as best we can. And they do understand the process."

The defense will ask the judge for a new trial, a common procedure. Even the defense expects the judge to deny the request and sentence Schuster in May. She faces life in prison without the possibility of parole.


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