Jury to continue deliberations

Couldn’t reach a verdict on assault case

Tribune Chronicle / R. Michael Semple Michael R. Tenney of Champion, accused of breaking his grandson’s arm last January, testifies Thursday afternoon in his assault trial before Trumbull County Common Pleas Court Judge Ronald J. Rice. Here, Tenney describes the layout of the room in his house where his grandson was playing when his arm was broken.

WARREN — A Trumbull County jury was sent home late Thursday afternoon after it could not reach a verdict in the case of a Champion man accused of breaking his grandson’s arm in January 2017.

The jury will return to the courtroom of Trumbull County Common Pleas Court Judge Ronald J. Rice at 9 a.m. today to resume deliberations to determine the fate of Michael R. Tenney, 64.

Tenney is charged with two counts of child endangering and one count of felonious assault.

Prior to deliberations, one male juror was dismissed after he was seen addressing Trumbull County Assistant Prosecutor Gabriel Wildman in the courtroom. He was replaced by a female alternate.

The defendant took the stand on the third day of testimony, saying he did not assault Kaleb Tenney, then age 5, in his Woodrow Avenue home on the night of Jan. 15, 2017.

Tenney testified the boy was jumping off the couch while he was tending to his one-year-old half brother.

“He had a shocked look on his face,” Tenney said about his grandson.

Earlier, Tenney said the couch was located above a main floor beam in a rental home that was renovated.

Tenney, who admitted to consuming six beers prior to the accident, said he touched the boy’s arm and it appeared to be broken. He said he immediately called and then texted the boy’s father, who took him to the hospital.

The defendant said he didn’t take the boy to the hospital himself because he didn’t have enough child-safety restraints in his vehicle.

The testimony contradicted that of state’s witnesses — the boy, his mother and two doctors — who claimed the boy’s broken humerus resulted from abuse. A witness for the defense, a doctor from Fairfax, Va., testified the boy’s injuries “could have resulted from a fall.”

Kaleb testified Tuesday that his grandfather “yanked hard on his arm twice.”

In responding to cross examination by Wildman, who asked how Tenney failed his polygraph exam, Tenney responded that he didn’t get a “good night’s” sleep the night prior to the exam last April.

Also testifying for the defense was Zachary Tenney, the father of the victim, who said his dad showed no signs of intoxication the night of the incident. After learning about his son’s injury, Zachary Tenney testified he picked up the boy under his arms and carried him to the car for transport to the hospital.

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