A jury in Douglas County could not reach a unanimous verdict in the sentencing of a man for his involvement in a fatal beating in 2010.
Tracen Franklin, 20, was found guilty in the murder of Bobby Tillman, 18, last week.
The jury ended deliberations Friday deadlocked on a 10-2 vote. Douglas County Superior Court Judge William McClain will now decide Franklin's punishment.
His options are life in prison with or without parole. The death penalty is no longer an option.
McClain said he will sentence Franklin next Friday.
Jurors started deliberations Tuesday.
Juror Bobby Garrett said the death penalty was quickly pushed aside. He said 10 jurors wanted the sentence to be life in prison without parole but two jurors would not budge from giving Franklin life in prison with the possibility of parole.
Garrett said there was one big reason the 12 jurors couldn't agree.
"Because he was so young. To me he was the same age of the victim and Bobby Tillman didn't have a choice in the matter."
In November of 2010, Tillman was at a teenage house party in Douglasville which the homeowners shut down because attendees - many of them uninvited - had grown unruly.
According to testimony, a friend of Franklin, Emanuel Boykins, was inadvertently struck as he tried to break up a fight among girls.
Witnesses testified that Boykins announced that since he doesn't hit girls, he would "pop" the next boy he saw. That boy was Tillman, who was sitting on the trunk of a friend's car.
Boykins threw the first punch, knocking Tillman to the ground. Witnesses said they saw Franklin join the attack, kicking and stomping Tillman repeatedly as he lay helpless on the ground.
The medical examiner testified that the beating caused a tear in Tillman's heart which killed him.
Boykins pleaded guilty to avoid the death penalty.
Quantez Devante Mallory, 19, and Horace Damon Coleman, 20, were also charged in the killing, but the prosecutor is not seeking the death penalty in their cases. They are awaiting trial.
"I think they should all be punished at the same time with the same thing," Garrett said.
Stay with CBSAtlanta.com for latest information as it becomes available.
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Tuesday, April 20 2010 11:21 PM EDT2010-04-21 03:21:00 GMT
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