The Senser verdict

The jury has started its deliberations in the case of Amy Senser, the woman who drove off after hitting and killing 38-year-old Anousone Phanthavong on an I-94 off-ramp last year. She insisted during her testimony yesterday that she didn’t know she hit someone.

Is that enough to avoid conviction on the most serious charges? There is, of course, no predicting what a jury might decide but this particular case has been accompanied by many in the public insisting that money and race would win out.

These tweets from the days after the accident revealed a general distrust that the the justice system would hold someone accountable.







But in the intervening weeks, investigators investigated, cops arrested, and prosecutors charged.

Even so, the jury’s decision could likely renew the heated rhetoric the case spawned.

  • Would have liked to see more granularity in the poll. I’m actually somewhere between “a little” and “not very much” but closer to “not very much” so voted “None.”

    But then, none of us were in the courtroom and actually heard/saw the evidence.

  • bj

    Fair. Will it be just?

  • John P.

    The thing that sold me on our justice system was serving on a Jury. I got to hear far more testimony than could make it into the news, and witnessed a room full of people doing their best to get it right. It’s not perfect, but I don’t know how you could do better.

  • Mark Gisleson

    I served on two juries years ago, and have faith that this jury has a much better handle on this case than people relying on the local media’s selective coverage.

    A good friend has attended the trial every day, and each day has told me details that didn’t appear in media reports.

    I am very confident the jury will return three guilty verdicts because to find Senser innocent on any of the counts would be to accept her defense which was little more than a series of excuses for driving off and not investigating after hitting “something.” For Amy Senser to take the stand and — despite Anousone Phanthavong’s blood on her car — say that she still doesn’t believe she hit him is preposterous and scripted.

    But if she gets off, the legislature needs to revisit the DUI laws they screwed up the last time they revised them. Driving away from an accident should never be an option, let alone “proof” of your innocence.

  • SarahinMpls

    I find it impossible to speculate about a fair trial because the media did not report enough details.

    There are too many critical unanswered questions that indicate the veracity of the defendant and husband’s character. For example…

    1.Given the importance of the concert ticket stub for proving Amy’s whereabouts, how is it that prosecution, defense, the college educated defendant and husband all failed to ensure its safekeeping for evidence? Jurors need to know a lot more about how it ended up lost at the Goodwill.

    2.Is the Senser front porch (where Joe claimed Amy often slept) screened in? If it’s not screened in she would have been eaten alive by mosquitoes.

  • Brian

    Online comments have gotten outrageously horrendous, mostly since people can be fairly anonymous.

    I’m hoping the jury accepts their duty with more responsibility than posting their views via Twitter.

  • Mark Gisleson

    Just also wanted to say that this is a good poll, at least compared to the Strib poll that asks readers what they think will happen. Not what should happen, not what they think the evidence says, but what they “think” will happen.

    Fox News couldn’t have written a more poorly designed set of poll questions. Who cares what people think the jury will do — people care about what the jury should do.

  • amy

    Amy has a long history of alcohol issues. Why is this not in the news. It is a well known fact among those who know her