Punch a juror, get a new trial

Richard Glawson, who had been on trial for a two-town crime spree that ended when he shot a Dedham cop, gets to start all over because he punched a juror last week, the Suffolk County District Attorney's office reports.

Suffolk Superior Court Judge Patrick Brady had initially refused to declare a mistrial. But Glawson's lawyers appealed to the Supreme Judicial Court (wonder if they're familiar with the old court joke about chutzpah and the guy charged with murdering his parents), where a single justice ordered Brady to ask remaining jurors if they felt they could remain impartial after watching Glawson hit the elderly juror. Eleven said they could, but four said they could not, so Brady ordered a mistrial. Selection of jurors for a new trial begins today.

In 2001, officials charge, Glawson went on a two-day rampage that started with a Roxbury house robbery, continued with a Chestnut Hill Mall shootout, and ended when he shot a Dedham cop in the hand. Along the way, he also shot a disabled man's dog and carjacked a vehicle.

Because he crossed county lines, Glawson created a jurisdictional tangle that has left prosecutors tied up in court for years:

In March of this year, a federal judge dismissed his suit alleging that being charged in both Norfolk and Suffolk counties was double jeopardy.

In 2003, he pled guilty to a variety of charges in Dedham Superior Court and was sentenced to 15 to 20 years in jail. The state Supreme Judicial Court had earlier dismissed a suit that the Norfolk charges were invalid because of the Suffolk charges. In 2004, he did win dismissal of a single count in Suffolk County because it related to one of the Norfolk felony charges for which he had been found guilty.