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3rd day of deliberations set in cellphone theft case

Oralandar Brand-Williams
The Detroit News

Detroit — Jurors deliberated for a second day Tuesday without reaching a verdict in the case of a St. Clair Shores police sergeant charged with committing armed robbery while retrieving his daughter's stolen cellphone.

The panel on Friday began deliberating the fate of Michael Notoriano, who is accused of getting the help of a friend, Detroit Police Sgt. David Pomeroy, to retrieve his daughter's stolen phone at an east-side Detroit gas station, where prosecutors say the pair stole pot, cash and a gun during the July 2013 incident.

Pomeroy has since taken a plea in the case. He is scheduled to be sentenced Wednesday in Wayne County Circuit Court.

Around 3:15 p.m. Tuesday, jurors sent a note to Judge Mark Slavens telling him they were at an impasse. The judge sent the jurors back to the jury room, urging them to continue to deliberate in order to reach a decision.

"Talk things over in the sprit of frankness and fairness," said Slavens.

An alternate juror is being called in for deliberations Wednesday because one of the jurors, a man, asked to be excused from deliberations for several days, beginning Wednesday, to attend his mother-in-law's funeral in southern Ohio.

Notoriano, who has been suspended without pay from his job, is accused of hitting one of the victims and using the N-word. In addition to armed robbery, he is charged with ethnic intimidation.

During a hearing in the case in January 2014, a Wayne County sheriff's deputy read several racist text messages about the incident that allegedly came from Notoriano's phone, including one that read, "I swear, I could shoot that (N-word) and sleep like a baby at night."

Notoriano's defense attorney, Todd Flood, testified there was no way to prove the police sergeant actually sent the texts.

The alleged victim in the case testified that Notoriano used a slur as he hit him.

The trial began Jan. 20.

bwilliams@detroitnews.com

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