NASCAR: Mistrial declared in Mike Wallace assault case
By AMANDA VINCENT
A mistrial was declared Wednesday in the trial of three men — Paul Lucas, Nathan Lucas and Randolph Mangum — charged with assaulting former NASCAR driver Mike Wallace, his daughter and son-in-law on June 17 after a Rascal Flatts concert in Charlotte, N.C.
The mistrial was declared, because two witnesses were in the courtroom Tuesday and, therefore, heard opening testimony, a violation of the case’s sequestration order. North Carolina District Court Judge Ronald Chapman said those witnesses’ testimony may have been influenced by testimony they heard before taking the stand.
“The fact someone appears to have directly violated an order from the judge is too much for me to let pass,” Chapman said.
Both witnesses have been charged with contempt of court because the judge ruled that they heard his order at the start of the trial that witnesses were not allowed in the courtroom, aside from when they were testifying. The witnesses have a hearing scheduled for Nov. 7.
Wallace said prosecutors told him that they would retry the case.
“All I can hope is we will have an honest day in court. I don’t understand it,” Wallace said, according to a report by ESPN
. “I sincerely don’t understand what a mistrial is or why a mistrial was caused.”