Alleged Jury Tampering in John Goodman Retrial Leads to Arrest
Jury deliberations have officially begun in the John Goodman DUI manslaughter retrial, but not before yet another possible issue with the jury.
Late Monday night, officials began an investigation on possible jury tampering. According to at least two reports, a witness in the trial was apparently texted from someone in Vermont after giving their testimony. The text allegedly asked for money in exchange to get the texter in with the jury in order to sway the verdict Goodman's way.
The texter was apparently arrested overnight.
Florida Panthers v Ottawa Senators
TicketsTue., Jan. 31, 7:30pm
Florida Panthers v Anaheim Ducks
TicketsFri., Feb. 3, 7:30pm
Florida Atlantic University Owls Men's Basketball vs. University of North Texas Mean Green Mens Basketball
TicketsThu., Feb. 9, 7:00pm
Florida Panthers v Los Angeles Kings
TicketsThu., Feb. 9, 7:30pm
According to the Palm Beach Post , sources close to the case said Goodman's friend Kris Kampsen was sent the text after being put on the stand.
Kampsen, who played on Goodman's polo team, is the owner of the now-infamous man cave where Goodman allegedly drank after he crashed and killed Scott Wilson in 2010.
WPTV reports that it was Kampsen who reported the text he received to authorities.
The person arrested, who has not been identified, is looking at possible federal charges, including jury tampering and extortion.
This is just the mostrecent episode in bizarre incidents involving the jury during the Goodman retrial.
Before the retrial even began, prospective juror Travis Van Vliet, was arrested after he Googled "John Goodman" on his computer. Palm Beach County Chief Circuit Court Judge Jeffrey Colbath had Van Vliet arrested on contempt-of-court charges, and he was eventually dismissed from serving on the jury.
Prior to the trial, rules were set that the jury would not search the internet, to avoid their finding any stories on Goodman that could potentially compromise them as impartial jurors.
A week after that incident, a female juror known as Juror 10 told Colbath she had been heckled by some people at the hotel's pool area who were warning her she would end up in jail like Vliet did.
According to a report, the woman told Colbath that a group of unknown persons spotted her and that the following day the same people heckled her, saying, "You'll go to jail like Van Fleet."
And just last week, a male juror known as Juror 3 apparently broke court rules by accessing the internet on his personal laptop while in his hotel room.
The man claimed he was surfing the net to check on his fantasy football team.
Attorneys who questioned him say that the juror was evasive when they asked about it and that he initially refused to turn over his laptop or password. He eventually gave a deputy his password and allowed the officer to check his browser history in his presence. Colbath expressed doubt over the man's story, but both sides were satisfied and allowed him to remain on the jury.
In fact, the entire Goodman retrial happened over an incident with a juror in the original trial.
In May 2013, Goodman's lawyers successfully got courts to grant him a retrial after it was learned one of the jurors apparently wrote a self-published book titled Will She Kiss Me or Kill Me? in which he wrote that his wife was once busted for DUI.
That juror, Dennis DeMartin, 69, failed during jury selection to disclose that information.
Goodman had originally been sentenced to 16 years in prison after he allegedly got drunk, got in his car and drove while intoxicated more than twice the legal limit, ran a stop sign, and then killed 23-year-old Scott Wilson when he crashed into him in 2010.
Get the Things to Do Newsletter
Find out about upcoming events and special offers happening in South Florida.