Jury in mistrial of accused Halloween shooter was 9-3 for guilt

The jury deadlocked 9 to 3 in favor of guilt on all three counts against Leonard Hall Jr. -- one of murder and two of attempted murder.
(Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
<i>This post has been corrected. See note below for details.</i>

The mother of a man accused of killing a 5-year-old boy in a Spider-Man costume left the courtroom Friday carrying a green pocket Bible after a mistrial was declared in her son’s case.

Leonard Hall Jr. was a gang member but not a murderer, Deborah Mosby said. Her heart goes out to the victim’s family, but she is going through a lot, too, she said.

“I’m glad God was in there,” she said Friday outside court. “God knows he didn’t do it.”


The victim’s grandfather, Wiliam Shannon, drew on reserves of patience as he hoped for a retrial.

“I think the system is fair. The thing is, the wheels of justice turn slowly,” Shannon said. “I understand that. My family understands that.”

The jury deadlocked 9 to 3 in favor of guilt on all three counts against Hall -- one of murder and two of attempted murder.

On Friday, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Bob S. Bowers Jr. declared a mistrial. The jury had been deliberating since Wednesday.

Aaron Shannon Jr. was showing off his Spider-Man costume to relatives in the backyard of his great-grandmother’s South L.A. home on Oct. 31, 2010, when two men opened fire from an alley.

At least one of the rounds struck Aaron in the back of the head. His uncle was hit in the leg and his grandfather on the wrist. The boy died at a hospital the next day.

A few days later, police arrested Hall, then 21, and Marcus Denson, then 18. Both were suspected members of the Kitchen Crips Gang. Police said the pair crossed into a rival gang’s territory looking for someone -- anyone -- to shoot as payback for an earlier shooting.

Denson has pleaded guilty to two counts of attempted murder and one count of voluntary manslaughter. He testified against Hall at the trial and is scheduled for sentencing May 17.

For the Record, 2:29 p.m. March 29: A previous version of this post said jury deliberations began Tuesday. They began Wednesday.


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