Jury fails to decide love triangle case

A mistrial has been declared in the case of a 35-year-old man accused of killing another man during a fight last November.

Jurors could not reach a unanimous decision in David Clear’s case after deliberating for more than three days, Pierce County Deputy Prosecutor Steve Penner said Wednesday. The jurors said they were deadlocked Wednesday, and Superior Court Judge Kitty-Ann van Doorninck declared a mistrial.

A new trial was scheduled for Dec. 14.

Prosecutors charged Clear with second-degree murder in the death of Benjamin Goodman, 40.

They said Clear hit Goodman on Nov. 25 during a fight in the 1300 block of South 38th Street in Tacoma. Goodman hit his head on the pavement, and a witness said Clear kicked him in the head while he was on the ground. Goodman died Dec. 25.

Investigators learned that Goodman had had a relationship with Clear’s wife while Clear was in prison.

During the trial, Clear testified he acted in self-defense, said his attorney Mark Quigley, who also argued that the assault on Goodman did not rise to a felony level.

Clear remains in Pierce County Jail in lieu of $750,000 bail.