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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Jury still out in Adams’ trial

    Hassan Adams
    Hassan Adams

    After two hours of deliberation, the jury in former UA basketball player Hassan Adams’ DUI trial could not reach a verdict and will reconvene today at 9 a.m. at Tucson City Court.

    Adams faces two charges of driving under the influence stemming from a March 5 arrest at East Sixth Street and North Park Avenue.

    Adams arrived late for the second day in a row – this time walking into the courtroom 55 minutes after the scheduled 8:30 a.m. start time. Adams said his ride “”flaked”” on him.

    Judge Margarita Bernal, who scolded him for his tardiness, asked if he was taking the matter seriously. Adams replied, “”I am.””

    Bernal ordered Adams, a current New Jersey Nets rookie, to pay a $100 fine for “”direct contempt”” to a charity of his choice.

    Two friends of Adams who were in the car when Adams was arrested at 12:25 a.m. testified today for the defense, who also called key witness Mark Stoltman, a forensic scientist and criminologist, to the stand.

    Stoltman testified that the Intoxilyzer, a machine used to judge a person’s blood alcohol level, can show different results for a variety of reasons. He said the device measures alcohol on breath but estimates alcohol in the blood.

    Hassan said he had consumed two or three beers at the time, each either 12 or 16 ounces, according to Adams’ answers in police reports. Stoltman testified that if Adams drank three 16-ounce beers, his blood alcohol level could have been 0.07 at most.

    The prosecution called one witness, officer Fredeberto Pedrego, a member of the DUI task force, after the arresting officer Kent Rhind testified on Monday. Pedrego said that Adams had a “”moderate odor of alcohol on his breath”” and had “”front-to-back”” body sway, but when cross-examined, Pedrego did not say whether Adams’ actions during the procedure were “”normal,”” only expressing that Adams was cooperative.

    According to police reports, Pedrego administered four Intoxilyzer tests to Adams. The first test gave an undisclosed reading but the second showed a “”mouth alcohol”” reading, rendering the tests unusable.

    After a 15-minute deprivation period, a third test was administered and concluded with a 0.121 reading. The fourth test, given five minutes after the third, showed Adams to have a BAC of 0.124, according to police reports.

    Adams’ two roommates at the time, Josh Bitton and Thomas Corey Walker, both testified that Adams was not drinking from the time he came back to his apartment at Exchange Luxury Student Apartments, 2800 W. Broadway, at 11 p.m. to the time the Chevy HHR was pulled over on the way to Belushi’s Bar and Grill.

    Bitton and Walker, who both live in California now, said they had no knowledge of Adams having anything to drink or being impaired to drive.

    In closing arguments, Adams’ attorney Stephen Paul Barnard, who has defended other high-profile people such as Diana Ross and Richard Simmons, told the jury the standardized field sobriety tests only proved that Adams made human mistakes and that Adams was “”not impaired by the alcohol he consumed.””

    The six-member jury, which contains five males and one female, had slightly under two hours to deliberate before Bernal dismissed the members for the day.

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