Hinds County District Attorney Robert Shuler Smith Credit: Hinds County DA office

The state’s top prosecutor says he is not pleased with Wednesday’s mistrial in the case of Hinds County District Attorney Robert Shuler Smith.

The case centered on whether Smith improperly helped a defendant named Christopher Butler evade criminal prosecution.

In September, Attorney General Jim Hood’s office charged Smith with  conspiracy to hinder prosecution and illegally assisting a criminal defendant.

During the final moments of the trial, Jim Waide, an attorney for Smith said he discovered one juror “had some prior opinion of Robert,” the Clarion-Ledger’s Anna Wolfe reported.

“Unfortunately, we learned after a 2-1/2 week trial that a juror talked during deliberations about having known the defendant,” Hood said through a news release.

Hood suggested that his office would again present the case to a grand jury “as soon as possible.”

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Ryan L. Nave, a native of University City, Mo., served as Mississippi Today's editor-in-chief from May 2018 until April 2020. Ryan began his career with Mississippi Today February 2016 as an original member of the editorial team. He became news editor August 2016. Ryan has a bachelor’s in political science from the University of Missouri-Columbia and has worked for Illinois Times and served as news editor for the Jackson Free Press.