A San Francisco Superior Court judge this morning declared a mistrial in the case of a man accused of stabbing two people at a Twin Peaks bakery in 2007 after jurors could not come to agreement on whether the defendant was legally sane at the time.
The jury had already found 29-year-old Scott Thomas guilty of two counts of attempted murder and one count of aggravated mayhem for stabbing 15-year-old Loren Schaller and 60-year-old Kermit Kubitz at Creighton’s bakery on May 19, 2007.
Schaller was severely injured but the quick work of a doctor who happened to arrive at the bakery just after the stabbings helped stabilize her until paramedics came. Kubitz’s injuries were less serious.
After seemingly reaching a unanimous verdict Monday afternoon that Thomas was–as prosecutors claim–legally sane at the time, two jurors reversed their decisions when asked individually by Judge Suzanne Bolanos.
Bolanos then sent them back to continue deliberations. This morning, the jury forewoman told Bolanos the group was hopelessly deadlocked, with eight in favor of sanity and four against.
Bolanos then dismissed the 10-woman, two-man jury. Prosecutor Scot Clark said he would retry the sanity phase of the trial, expected to last another six to eight weeks.
Clark said he was committed to making sure Thomas “spends the rest of his life in prison and doesn’t get released into the community through a state hospital.”
If Thomas were to be found legally insane at the time of the crimes, he would be sent to a state mental hospital until his sanity is restored. If found sane, he would face life in prison.
“Whatever’s wrong with him, they can’t fix it,” Clark said. “He’s a sociopath.”
Clark argued during the trial that Thomas had “obvious psychological issues” but had the intent and deliberation to commit the acts, which Clark said allowed him to be legally considered sane.
Thomas’ attorney Stephen Rosen argued that Thomas’ mental illness robbed him of choice.
Thomas had been released on parole from San Quentin State Prison the day before the attacks after serving nearly four months for a parole violation.
He had previous convictions for grand theft auto, hit-and-run, petty theft and vandalism. The state Office of the Inspector General later concluded he had been released by mistake.