April 24 2019
(CMR) Unaware that an American cruise ship passenger has died the local prosecution's office informed the court last week that they intend to retry her gun possession case in September after a hung jury was unable to reach a verdict.
The same day that the DPP's office informed that court that they would proceed with a September re-trial the defendant died.
Carol Ann McNeill-Skorupan (67) had come to Cayman as a passenger aboard a cruise ship when she was arrested on Feb. 3. Carol Ann McNeill-Skorupan, pleaded not guilty to possession of a .25 pistol and six rounds of ammunition.
The defendant was the holder of a firearm licence in Wisconsin, USA, but did not have a licence in Cayman. It was accepted that a piece of her luggage with the firearm and ammunition in it did not arrive with her other luggage when she flew to Florida to board her ship. The luggage was forwarded to Cayman, the first port on the ship’s itinerary.
Trial began on Monday, April 15, with Crown counsels Greg Walcolm and Aaliyah McCarthy conducting the case for the prosecution. The defendant, who was not present, was represented by attorneys Keith Myers and James Stenning.
However, on Wednesday, April 17, the jury foreman advised Justice Michael Wood that the jury would not be able to return a unanimous verdict or a majority verdict – one on which at least five would have agreed. He discharged the jury and just last week.
Monday, Sept. 23, has been set as the start of a new trial for a woman who pleaded not guilty to possession of an unlicensed handgun and six rounds of ammunition earlier this year.
The case had made international news in the United States after many Americans claim that they ignorance of local laws should allow them immunity from prosecution. More notably David Meadors, a South Florida contractor, has attempted to seek public sympathy via the media. CMR reported earlier that Meadows has left the jurisdiction and appears to have tried to scrub his online profiles before resurfacing in the US media.
McNeill Skorupan is the former chairperson of the Dane County branch of the Republican Party of Wisconsin. The charge McNeill Skorupan faced carried a ten year prison sentence if she was found guilty at trial. Only extenuating circumstances would alter that consequence.