The Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s Office tried to paint the acquittal of a Gaithersburg man as the jury believing the defendant had been punished enough.
A juror disagreed.
“The decision was legal and not sentimental,” Tom Rushton said.
Rushton, a county resident, served on the jury that found Wayne Matthew Price, 51, not guilty of murdering his son.
After the verdict, Ramon Korionoff, the state’s attorney’s office spokesman, released this statement: “Shooting your own son to death is a tragedy no matter how you look at it and seemingly, the jury might have felt it was punishment enough for the father to deal with his own conscience for the rest of his life at the death of his one-and-only, Matthew. We accept the jury’s verdict but respectfully disagree with it.”
Rushton, who helped to craft the verdict Monday evening, wrote The Gazette in an email. that the jury’s mindset during the five hours of deliberations was strictly based on the legal facts of the case and the evidence presented.
“Not once in the deliberation process was this concept ever put forward,” Rushton wrote of Korionoff’s statement. “The jury was thorough, considerate and freely discussed all sides of the evidence.”
Price argued during testimony at trial that he did not intend to kill his son, 23-year-old Matthew Eugene Price, when he retrieved a handgun from his bedroom and pointed it at the younger man. Wayne Price wanted to frighten his son after his son attacked him.
“In the end, the jurors agreed that the state failed to prove Mr. Price’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt with regard to self defense,” Rushton wrote.