Jury still out in sexual assault case

The jury is still out in the case of a Palmer man accused of sexually assaulting one of his coworkers in Kenai.

Rosendo Pallones, 40, has been charged with three counts of first-degree sexual assault for an incident reported at the Snug Harbor Seafoods cannery in Kenai last July.

The jury has been in deliberation since closing arguments were made on Friday, and was called back into court after sending out a note. As of Monday afternoon, the jury was unable to reach a unanimous decision on one of the three charges.

Superior Court Judge Charles Huguelet said he was reluctant to declare a hung jury so soon, and the jury was sent back for further deliberation.

In the event that a jury is able to reach a verdict on only two of three charges, those two verdicts would be accepted, while a mistrial would be declared for the third charge. The state would then have the option to retry the third charge.

If convicted, Pallones faces a minimum of 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $500,000.

Reach Megan Pacer at megan.pacer@peninsulaclarion.com.

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