Jury deadlocks on murder and robbery charges in Bakersfield attorney’s death

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Jury deadlocks on murder and robbery charges in Bakersfield attorney’s death

Posted: May 6, 2021 / 2:22 PM PDT
Updated: May 6, 2021 / 3:29 PM PDT

Marcos Vargas is pictured on the left while the murder accused Nicholas Quintana and defense attorney Timothy Hennessy are pictured on the right.

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) – A Kern County jury was bogged down Thursday for murder and robbery after advising five days in the trial of a man charged with the gruesome murder of a Bakersfield attorney.

A mistrial was declared on these charges. The jury convicted Nicholas Quintana, 22, of gun possession for having an illegal firearm at the time of his arrest.

Judge Brian M. McNamara scheduled a hearing on May 18 to set a retrial date. Quintana is being held without bail.

When asked by McNamara, each juror said that further consideration would not result in a verdict on the deadlocked censuses. The jury said they were guilty 9-3 on these counts.

The jury foreman declined to speak to a reporter afterwards.

Quintana is charged with the murder of Marcos Vargas, 26, on November 29, 2017. Quintana testified that he stabbed Vargas in self-defense when he tried to escape Vargas’ apartment after the lawyer invited him.

Prosecutor Eric Smith argued that Quintana planned to rob and attack Vargas after meeting him on a dating app. Vargas was almost beheaded. Quintana admitted stealing items from the apartment.

Vargas was working for Greater Bakersfield Legal Assistance at the time of his death.