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Mistrial Declared for Teen in Murder Plot

February 15, 2006

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) _ A judge declared a mistrial Tuesday in the case of a teenager accused of plotting with two former boyfriends to murder her mother.

Jurors sent a note to the judge saying they couldn’t reach a unanimous decision on the guilt or innocence of 17-year-old Rachelle Waterman. They were on their fifth day of deliberations.

Prosecutors say Waterman conspired with the two men to murder her mother, Lauri Waterman, whose charred body was found in the family’s minivan off a remote logging road in November 2004.

Jason Arrant and Brian Radel, who were 24 years old at the time of the killing, have pleaded guilty to murder and testified against Waterman.

At age 15, the teenager began a blog she called, ``My Crappy Life.″ She rambled about fights with her parents, and railed against coerced trips to church on Sunday. She told police that her mother mentally and physically abused her.

Ketchikan District Attorney Stephen West said the state has not made a final decision on whether to retry the case, but there was a ``good chance″ it would happen. The defense has asked for all charges to be dropped.

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