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Mallery verdict not quite unanimous

Attorney says two of 12 jurors thought Pacific VP was guilty of two counts

The not-guilty verdicts handed down in the sex abuse trial of Pacific University administrator Michael Mallery last week were not all unanimous, the defense attorney in the case has told the News-Times.

Mallery, vice-president of finance and administration at the Forest Grove school, was acquitted March 18 on five counts of first-degree sex abuse involving minor members of his family. He was back at work Monday, according to Pacific officials.

The 12-member jury, which was split evenly between men and women, returned unanimous not-guilty verdicts on charges related to the younger alleged victim, who is now 11 years old.

But two of the 12 jurors — both men — thought Mallery was guilty of molesting the older girl, who is now 15, according to Mallery’s defense attorney, Richard Cohen of Cohen & Coit law firm in Clackamas.

Mallery was arrested in January and had been on personal leave from his job at Pacific since then. The charges stemmed from incidents prosecutors said occurred in 2010 and 2013.

Having won acquittal in the criminal sex-abuse case, Mallery is now pursuing a civil case against the mother of the girls, Sarah Haggerty, for reinstatement of custody and visitation rights with his family members, the subjects of the criminal trial.

Haggerty testified for the prosecution in the criminal case, which was tried over eight days in Washington County Circuit Court by Senior Deputy District Attorney Kevin Barton.

On March 19, a day after Mallery’s exoneration, Pacific President Lesley Hallick sent an email to faculty, staff and students welcoming Mallery back to campus:

“Late yesterday Mike Mallery, vice president of Finance and Administration, was found not guilty on all charges,” the email read. “Mike had been charged with sex abuse earlier this year and has been on personal leave from the university since that time.

“We are working with Mike on his return to work, and will begin that transition [May 20]. We look forward to having him back on campus and back at work.”

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