Fourth trial set for former U.Va. student in sexual assault case

Judge declared mistrial after hung jury

A Charlottesville Circuit Court judge has scheduled a fourth new trial date for a former University student accused of forcible sodomy in April 2015.

Adam Ott was accused of sexually assaulting another student at an apartment on Brandon Avenue in April 2015. Ott was arrested in June of that year, and has had three trials since.

At the June 30, 2016 trial, a defense witness failed to appear, and the defense filed a motion to continue the trial at a later date. At the Nov. 21, 2016 trial, the defense and prosecution could not agree on enough jury members to hold a trial.

Ott pleaded not guilty at the Nov. 21 and March 28 trials.

After all evidence was presented at the March 28 trial, the defense made two separate motions to strike the prosecution’s evidence as “insufficient to sustain a conviction against the defendant of the offense,” according to court documents. The court denied both requests.

Also at the March 28 trial, the defense argued the sexual relations between Ott and the plaintiff were consensual. The plaintiff claimed she was forced to perform oral sex on Ott.

The jury announced it was unable to reach a unanimous verdict after deliberations. The court gave the jury additional instructions, but the jurors were still unable to reach a unanimous verdict. The jury deliberated for over four hours total.

The judge declared a mistrial, which is standard for trials with a hung jury.

Another two-day trial is scheduled for June 15. 

related stories