Mistrial Pending for Aaron Knodel; Jury Is Dismissed

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The trial of West Fargo teacher Aaron Knodel comes to an abrupt end.

After a juror became ill, the entire jury was dismissed and a mistrial is pending.

KVRR’s Brittany Ford has the latest on the cases unusual twists and turns.

In an unusual twist, the judge announced a juror was admitted to the hospital shortly after deliberations continued this morning.

It was later explained to the courtroom the juror failed to mention in prior paneling she had been sexually abused.

The judge also identified her as the sole juror holding out for a guilty verdict.
“About prior experience in sexual assault perhaps that sort of questioning I’m sure you remember the questioning there that it did occur to her and she did not disclose it.”
Given the rare circumstance the judge polled the jury to see where they were at.
“Not guilty of the crime.”
They found Aaron Knodel not guilty on three of the five charges and verdict forms were filled out, but the verdicts are not official.

The jury was then dismissed.
“We caught up with one of the jury members who gave us what she said was happening behind the scenes.”
“We feel so much better knowing that he was… we all believed that he wasn’t guilty hope his family doesn’t have to go through this again and that’s all I want to say.”
Because the three verdicts are not official the prosecution can call for a mistrial on all or just some of the charges.

The process for a mistrial can take up to a month.

Brittany Ford, KVRR News.
The Knodels did not talk to the media while leaving the courthouse.