Jury convicts Danville police officer of assault, deadlocks on manslaughter

MARTINEZ, CA - OCTOBER 05: Danville Police Officer Andrew Hal stands on Court Street after leaving the A.F. Bray Courts Building on Monday , October 4, 2021 in Martinez,, Calif. The trial of Danville Police Officer Andrew Hall, who fatally shot Laude

Two different verdicts were reached Tuesday in the trial of a Danville officer who shot and killed a mentally ill man in 2018, capping the month-long trial.

A judge declared a mistrial on the count of voluntary manslaughter in the case against Officer Andrew Hall after the jury said it was hopelessly deadlocked on that charge. However, the jury found Hall guilty of assault.

Hall could now face up to 17 years in prison for shooting 33-year-old Laudemer Arboleda in 2018 in Contra Costa County. Jurors deliberated barely two days before reaching the verdict. 

"Deputy Hall’s actions were not only a crime, but they tarnished the badge and they harmed the reputation of all the good, hard-working police officers that work for our community," said Contra Costa County District Attorney Diana Becton. The prosecutor said her office would determine at a later date whether to retry Hall on the manslaughter charge.

Harry Stern, Hall's attorney, said he plans to file a motion for a new trial. He said the assault conviction was "legally inconsistent" with the jury's inability to reach a verdict on the manslaughter charge.

He said the jury was deadlocked with seven on the panel leaning toward not guilty on the manslaughter charge.

"It's a mixed bag, frankly," Stern said. "I feel horrible, obviously for Deputy Hall at this point. But we'll continue to fight."

Standing outside the DA's office, civil attorney Adante Pointer was surrounded by Arboleda's family. 

He said the family was grateful for a guilty verdict but believes more justice could be done.

Hall was on trial for the November 2018 death of 33-year-old  Arboleda, an unarmed Filipino man who was slowly driving away from police when Hall shot him nine times. Police had been summoned because of complaints about a person ringing doorbells. 

The fatal shooting cast a spotlight on what criminal justice activists call a case of delayed justice and its deadly consequences.

Felony charges were announced against Hall two-and-a-half years after Arboleda was shot. During that period, Hall fatally shot another man, Tyrell Wilson, who was homeless and mentally ill.

In a brief statement posted to social media, Contra Costa County Sheriff David Livingston said he had hoped the jury would have returned a not guilty verdict on all counts, but adding, "I respect their service." He urged the district attorney to not retry this case. The sheriff denounced the DA's posts on her re-election campaign's social media where according to him, she, "touts this prosecution."