Tippecanoe Co. Juror explains why they acquitted an accused murderer

It's been a little more than a year since Lafayette art teacher Kristi Redmon was shot and killed on her front porch. In July, Darius Printup was on trial for her murder but a jury decided he was not guilty.

Posted: Nov. 17, 2017 11:02 AM
Updated: Nov. 17, 2017 11:41 AM

LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — It's been a little more than a year since Lafayette art teacher Kristi Redmon was shot and killed on her front porch.

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In July, Darius Printup was on trial for her murder but a jury decided he was not guilty.

News 18's Kayla Sullivan covered the trial. That's how WLFI knows the juror we talked to legitimately served on Printup's jury.

He wishes to stay anonymous to the public for safety reasons but wanted to explain why they came to their decision and how it has affected him.

"I think about it every day," said the juror as he tried holding back tears. The decision still haunts him.

"I don't think any of us in that room didn't think he was guilty," said the juror. "But I guess if you were in that situation, you would want the jury to do the same thing."

Darius Printup said the jury did what was right.

"I mean cause I know if I was a juror, same case, same scenario, I would have came with the same verdict, I'm pretty sure," said Printup.

The juror said this was the perfect crime.

"There was no blood, there was no clothing, no fingerprints," said the juror.

But Tippecanoe County Prosecutor Patrick Harrington said that is not the case.

"That's the CSI myth," said Harrington. "In most of our violent crimes, we have none of that."

Harrington said most trials rely heavily on witness testimony. But TV shows don't reflect that. Instead, they show how police caught the bad guy using technology that usually doesn't exist in the real world.

"We spend a lot of time on each trial bringing experts in to explain why we don't have that evidence," said Harrington. "To educate the jurors that despite what they see on TV, it doesn't exist in this case in particular or that science doesn't exist at all and can't be used in a courtroom."

But this juror doesn't blame TV shows, he said the jury's decision was based on the witnesses.

"Every story that they told was different," said the juror.

"I have no doubt what the juror told you about their credibility," responded Harrington. "It was a major issue during trial that these witnesses were not testifying consistent with their prior statements."

So, what are prosecutors supposed to do when witnesses change their stories? Harrington said most witnesses to crimes are also criminals.

"Really, I don't know if there was anything in that case they could have done differently," said the juror. "I mean, I'm sure there are a lot of things maybe we didn't get to see."

Like for instance, recordings of those original statements to police. Harrington said those aren't allowed to be considered by a jury.

"It can't be used as direct evidence or substantive evidence at trial," said Harrington. "That just tells us what the witness knows to make the filing decision."

Based on those initial statements, Harrington said they had more than enough to file the murder charge.

But Printup said their case was just all talk. However, he won't say what really happened that night.

"I'm not at liability to say that," said Printup. "But what I can speak on is just how life after that is. You shouldn't have to go through the things that we are going through."

"But you can tell me that you did not shoot Kristi Redmon?" asked News 18's Kayla Sullivan.

"I can tell you that," said Printup.

Printup said since he was let out, police haven't let up.

"I can't even walk to the store without getting searched by the police," said Printup. "Always searching me for drugs and stuff. It's all the bull crap that they put in the news about the situation, it's all out in the media. You know they profiling based off that and I just feel like it's not right."

Printup is working to pursue a music career and is still working on reimbursements for the time he spent in jail.

He doesn't want to stay in Lafayette.

"I don't plan on sticking around too much longer," said Printup.

He said people still think he's guilty and say things to him in public.

"Everybody has different opinions so, and that's one thing about this whole court system, it's all opinionated. Like, most times," siad Printup.

The juror we spoke to said if it were up to opinions, Printup would be in prison.

"Even though you may think and in your heart you know that they're guilty, if you don't have anything to prove that then it's kind of hard to pass that decision," said the juror.

However, this juror didn't know how hard it would be after the trial. Not only because he feels a guilty man is free but because he didn't know a hung jury was an option.

"There had to be a decision made so, that in our mind, was guilty or not guilty," said the juror.

But a jury can be hung if members can't reach a unanimous decision. It's rare, but it happens.
"We have about a 12 percent hung jury rate," said Harrington.

And the reasons are usually the same.

"Jurors did not believe the credibility of the witnesses," said Harrington.

Not a day goes by where this juror doesn't think about justice for Kristi Redmon and those who knew her. He said it was the most difficult decision he's ever had to make.

"It was awful. I mean just that family," the juror paused to cry. "It was bad."

Wednesday night on News 18 at six, hear from Kristi Redmon's family, friends, and coworkers about how they're coping with the murder and the fact justice won't be served in this case.

We'll also talk about Redmon's legacy and explain why it will live on for years to come.

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