Mistrial declared on Ethan Mack's murder charge

Judge J.C. Nicholson Jr. instructs the jury Friday afternoon.
Judge J.C. Nicholson Jr. instructs the jury Friday afternoon.
Ethan Mack looks on during court Friday.
Ethan Mack looks on during court Friday.
Janice Waring, Kate Waring's mother looks on in court Friday
Janice Waring, Kate Waring's mother looks on in court Friday
Ethan Mack discusses with his attorneys
Ethan Mack discusses with his attorneys

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - The jury in the Ethan Mack murder trial told Judge J.C. Nicholson Jr. it could not reach a unanimous verdict on the murder charge facing Mack for the death of Kate Waring, therefore the judge declared a mistrial.

Jurors found Mack guilty on obstruction of justice and forgery charges. He's been sentenced to 10 years in prison on the obstruction charge, and five years on the forgery charge. The sentences will be served concurrently, with credit for time served since last year.

The decisions came around 6:30 p.m. Friday, after nearly 14 hours of deliberations.

After the verdict was announced, Ethan Mack's family left the courtroom immediately and declined to comment on Ethan's sentence.

Kate Waring's family made a public address that lasted about two minutes.  Tom Waring, Kate's father, spoke on behalf of the family.  He expressed sympathy for Mack's family, thanked family and friends for support.

The Waring family said they were pleased with the two unanimous charges against Mack, but they still plan on going back to trial for the murder charge.

Friday afternoon Judge Nicholson sent the jury back to deliberations "with the hope you come to a conclusion," he said.

The jury was sent back to the jury room and looked very unhappy.

The case had been in the hands of the jury since 4:40 p.m. Thursday.

Nicholson began court at 10 a.m. Friday and the jury was instructed to continue deliberating.

The jury broke at 9:15 p.m. Thursday night after spending over four hours behind closed doors, trying to determine if Mack is guilty of murdering Kate Waring in June 2009. Judge J.C. Nicholson Jr. made the decision to end for the night and pick back up Friday.

Mack's family spent part of Thursday night singing and playing gospel music at one end of the hallway in the courtroom while waiting for the verdict. The music wasn't loud, but this is typically not allowed.

On Thursday, both the defense and prosecution gave closing arguments to the jury.

The defense told the jury that there isn't any evidence linking Mack to the crime of murder. Instead, they say that Heather Kamp, a pathological liar, is to blame.

"Everybody knows she is a liar," defense attorney Stephen Harris said. "I'm not going to waste my time telling you all of the lies."

Kamp however, is the prosecution's key witness. As Solicitor Scarlett Wilson made her final argument for the jury, she said letters Mack wrote to Kamp and text messages that were sent help prove Mack's involvement in Waring's murder.

"That man (Mack) left his friend in the woods to rot," Wilson.

Wilson says Mack was not the man his mother, father and sister thought he was.

Harris says Mack was a good man who after learning of Waring's murder, wanted to work and take care of the unborn child Kamp lied about and said they were going to have.

"Believing that this woman is going to the mother of his child, he is going to work to make money. Of course the state wants you to believe he killed his best friend," Harris said.

Get live updates on the trial on our live blog.

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