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Judge Declares Mistrial in Hale Case

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Related Links
_ Hale Loses Bid to Halt Trial (April 22)

_ A Cloud Over Starr Witness (April 19)

_ Full Coverage: Clinton Accused

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Associated Press
Friday, May 1, 1998; Page A19

LITTLE ROCK, Ark., April 30 – A judge declared a mistrial today in the state case against David Hale, saying the Whitewater figure's prolonged hospital stay was imposing an unreasonable burden on jurors.

Pulaski County Circuit Judge David Bogard called the jurors to court to tell them they were off the case. Then he set jury selection for a new trial to begin July 8.

Hale lawyer David Bowden, who had argued against the mistrial, said he might try to block the rescheduled trial with a claim that Hale was unconstitutionally being subjected to double jeopardy.

Hale, who is to be released Monday from a hospital, complained of heart troubles about an hour before opening arguments were to start. He is charged with causing a false or misleading statement to be filed with state insurance regulators about the solvency of a burial insurance company the state says he owned.

Hale was one of the main witnesses in the 1996 Whitewater trial of former governor Jim Guy Tucker and James B. and Susan McDougal. All three were convicted.

© Copyright 1998 The Washington Post Company

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