LOS ANGELES : King Jury Asks How to Fill Out Verdict Forms

A jury in its seventh day of deliberations asked the judge Wednesday to explain the procedure for filling out complicated verdict forms in the punitive damages phase of Rodney G. King's lawsuit.

The inquiry, however, did not presage an immediate verdict. The panel retired Wednesday afternoon with no announcements after 43 1/2 hours of deliberations.

U.S. District Judge John Davies told the panel to fill out each of the seven forms as verdicts are reached and save them until all are completed. The panelists were confused about whether they should return verdicts one by one for each of six current and former police officers remaining as defendants.

Although there are six defendants, the jury must reach seven verdicts because one former officer, Theodore J. Briseno, has countersued King, charging that King shoved him in the chest moments before King's March 3, 1991, beating.

The jury already has awarded King $3.8 million in actual damages from the city of Los Angeles.

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