Mistrial in Calif. trial of woman charged with arranging death of cancer-stricken husband

Jury deadlock in California cancer-victim killing

SANTA ANA, Calif. — A judge has declared a mistrial in the case of a former Orange County woman accused of hiring a hit man to kill her husband because she thought his cancer treatments would eat up their savings.

Jurors in Santa Ana deadlocked 11-1 Tuesday for conviction in the case charging 58-year-old Sandra Jessee and her son, 39-year-old Thomas Aehlert of Arizona. Prosecutors plan to refile the case.

Jessee and Aehlert were charged with murder for financial gain and conspiracy.

Prosecutors alleged they paid a friend $50,000 to stab 56-year-old Jack Jessee in the family’s Placentia home in 1998 as he recovered from colon cancer surgery.

The attacker pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter and testified at Jessee’s trial.

Information from: The Orange County Register, www.ocregister.com

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