Max Hardcore Denied New Trial

Rhett Pardon
TAMPA, Fla. — A federal judge has denied a new trial for Max Hardcore, convicted last month of distributing obscene materials.

Hardcore requested a new trial on several grounds, but U.S. District Judge Susan Bucklew said that the issues relating to the firing of the juror and other instances of alleged irregularities involving jurors did not affect the outcome of the case and did not detract from Hardcore’s constitutional rights.

With Monday’s order, Hardcore is scheduled to be sentenced Sept. 5.

Hardcore’s attorneys argued that the jury trial was affected by the fact that one of the jurors was fired from her job the night before the verdict was returned.

The juror who was fired from her job had resisted convicting Hardcore and his company, Max World Entertainment, attorneys said.

Before reaching their verdict, jurors sent a note to Bucklew stating they were deadlocked. Three jurors were holding out; one of them was the woman who had sent a note to the judge earlier in the day asking to talk to Bucklew because the juror had been fired.

The judge didn't meet with the juror until after the verdicts and didn't tell attorneys in the case about the juror's note, defense attorneys said. They noted that the court's failure to disclose the note to attorneys was improper and warrants a new trial.

The defense also sought a new trial on other grounds, including an assertion that a prosecutor made an improper comment to a juror during the trial.

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