EVERETT — The jury began its deliberations shortly after noon on Friday, Nov. 9, following the closing arguments in the trial of a Marysville Police officer whose 7-year-old daughter was shot by a handgun he'd left unsecured.
Joan Cavagnaro, chief criminal deputy prosecutor for Snohomish County, remained circumspect in commenting on the second-degree manslaughter trial of Officer Derek Carlile in Snohomish County Superior Court in Everett, which began on Monday, Nov. 5, but she did allude to the areas that neither prosecutors nor defense attorneys were challenging.
"There's not much dispute over who did what, nor much of an argument over the proximate cause of death," Cavagnaro said. "The argument has been over whether the defendant's action or inaction constituted criminal negligence."
Cavagnaro explained that the state defines criminal negligence as the failure to be aware of a substantial risk that a wrongful act may occur, with such a failure in turn constituting a gross deviation from the standard of care that a reasonable person would exercise in the same situation.
"Just as the defense attorneys have argued that this was a momentary lapse, rather than a gross deviation, that he just forget to secure his gun, and it could have happened to anyone, the state's argument has been that this was not the case," Cavagnaro said of the shooting, which occurred on March 10 of this year.
Cavagnaro declined to speculate how long the jury's deliberations might take, except to predict that they would have lunch before deciding.
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