Court: New trial for Duluth cop accused of exploiting mother -

Posted On October 03, 2008 by Charles Ramsay

The Minnesota Court of Appeals rejected a Duluth Trial Court Judge's order and said a complicated law is not unconstitutionally vague or ambiguous.

In the published 21-page opinion, the court finds there is no evidence to conclude the statute is subject to more than one reasonable interpretation. This is contradicted by the judge who discussed in great detail how the statute is vague.

The jurors also said the law was so comlicated, they did not understand how to interpret the meanings of some of the words and phrases. The Duluth News Tribune was able to speak with some of the jurors after the trial last fall.

"The way the law was written was so vague is why we couldn't come up with a decision,' one jurror said. "... He was providing, and it didn't seem like Lois was out on the street hungry and homeless."

Juror Brent Gavin, 37, said "the law was very complex and, as lay people, certainly it was difficult to understand. In fact, it seemed not very clear-cut at all.' He said jurors stumbled on the legal definition of "intent' and what constituted Campbell's failure to provide for his mother's needs.

See the latest on this from the Pioneer Press.