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Malheur County criminal cases may be reworked due to U.S. Supreme Court ruling

The Malheur County Courthouse in Vale. (The Enterprise/Rachel Parsons)

Oregon’s high courts may ask Malheur County to rework as many as seven criminal cases in which the defendant was convicted by a split jury, according to Malheur County District Attorney Dave Goldthorpe.

A U.S. Supreme Court ruling in April determined that split verdicts in criminal felony cases were unconstitutional. Oregon was the only U.S. state that allowed non-unanimous juries to do so prior to the decision, said Goldthorpe. 

As a result, the Oregon Supreme Court and the Oregon Court of Appeals are returning cases to county prosecutors to consider again.

Juries in Oregon could previously find people guilty in . . .