A Cal Poly student accused of sexual assault was acquitted Wednesday afternoon in San Luis Obispo Superior Court following a single day of jury deliberation.
In the seven-day trial, jurors found too little evidence and too much doubt to convict Frank Nguyen, 21, of San Luis Obispo, of sexual battery and penetration with a foreign object for a March 23 incident involving a female student.
The jury also split 8-4 over a lesser possible charge of simple battery, prompting Superior Court Judge Jacqueline Duffy to declare a mistrial on that count.
Nguyen let out a deep breath and smiled at his attorney, Patrick Fisher, as the verdict was read. His mother and friends seated behind him hugged and wiped away tears.
After the jury was excused, foreperson Alice Fisus told The Tribune that jurors felt the prosecution did not provide enough evidence in the case.
“There was a lot of reasonable doubt,” Fisus said before embracing a sobbing Nguyen as he left the courtroom.
Following the verdict, Assistant District Attorney Lee Cunningham wrote in an email that the District Attorney’s Office has no plans to re-file charges based on the hung jury over the lesser charge of simple battery.