Bloomberg Law
Feb. 9, 2022, 3:09 PM

Judge’s Decision to Reweigh Evidence, Toss Meth Verdict Upheld

Bernie Pazanowski
Bernie Pazanowski

A district court acted within its discretion when it vacated a jury verdict against an alleged drug dealer because the evidence “preponderated heavily” against the verdict, the Fifth Circuit said.

Although the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas said that the evidence supported the verdict against Samuel Crittenden, it reweighed that evidence and decided that the prosecution didn’t show that he knew the drug involved was methamphetamine, which is an element of the crime. To uphold the verdict would be a miscarriage of justice, it said, ordering a new trial.

The district court didn’t abuse its discretion, ...