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.
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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.