Nevada County jury reaches no decision about sanity of Jason Schuller in murder case; retrial set for March 6
January 4, 2018
Jurors in the Nevada County murder trial of Jason Schuller on Wednesday, Jan. 3, could reach no decision about his sanity at the time of the crime, forcing attorneys to schedule a new trial for March 6.
Schuller, 36, was convicted last month of first-degree murder in the March 2016 shooting death of William Tackett, 67. Having pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity, Schuller then proceeded to a second phase of his trial. In that phase jurors had to decide if he was insane at the time.
Jurors deliberated for over two days before reaching a stalemate.
Assistant District Attorney Chris Walsh said he was disappointed, though he called jurors conscientious.
Deputy Public Defender Micah Pierce, who represents Schuller, declined comment.
Attorneys will return Jan. 19 before Superior Court Judge Candace Heidelberger, when they’ll confirm the March 6 trial date and ensure witnesses are available.
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Walsh told the judge he anticipates the trial will take two weeks.
The jury that convicted Schuller of murder found that he fatally shot Tackett at the older man’s home before setting his body on fire. Schuller then fled from the Grass Valley house, leading authorities on a chase that ended in Sacramento.
During trial Schuller testified that Tackett told him he was Lucifer, and that he shot his friend when Tackett reached for a gun.