The San Luis Obispo County District Attorney’s Office told a judge Wednesday that it will no longer pursue the 10-year-old fraud case against two former North County hard-money lenders that ended in a hung jury earlier this week.
The case against Rodney Jarmin and Tammy Jordan, former co-owners of Paso Robles-based company Real Property Lenders, ended in mistrial Monday after jurors couldn’t agree on a verdict following three days of deliberations.
Of the three counts both defendants faced of selling securities by using false statements or omissions, jurors split 11-1 in favor of not guilty on the first charge and 8-4 in favor of not guilty on the remaining two.
On Wednesday, Deputy District Attorney Eric Dobroth told Superior Court Judge Jacquelyn Duffy, who presided over the month-long trial, that he would not refile the charges, which would have kicked off new proceedings.
It’s a great relief for them that its finally over.
Robert Sanger, attorney for Rodney Jarmin
In a news release Wednesday, District Attorney Dan Dow said that the prosecution team concluded that another trial would be unlikely to result in a guilty verdict.
“While we are very mindful of the significance of this case to the individual investors, and our community as a whole, we are convinced there is little likelihood of securing unanimous verdicts at a retrial,” Dow wrote. “I am very proud of the professionalism and and hard work of our team and we thank the jury for their time and attention during the lengthy trial.”
Jordan and Jarmin were not immediately available for comment Wednesday, but Robert Sanger, Jarmin’s attorney, said both are ready to put the case behind them.
“Its been a long ordeal for Mr. Jarmin and his wife and obviously for the co-defendant and her family as well,” Sanger said after the hearing. “It’s a great relief for them that its finally over.”
In the case that one judge called “long and convoluted,” prosecutors alleged that the pair did not properly inform investors that the housing market was crashing in 2007. Both were charged criminally in 2011, following a recommendation by the Department of Corporations.
The number of alleged victims and how much money they lost have varied throughout the process, but Dobroth ran through a listing in his closing arguments that indicated at least nine people lost a total of about $645,000 in a crucial seven-month period in 2007.
Defense attorneys argued that the pair disclosed everything they knew about the declining market in real time, and that both defendants lost their own money trying to save the business. According to court testimony, Jordan lost her house.