Oakland jury reaches jumbled verdict on Ghost Ship warehouse fire

Joshua Jordan/Senior Staff

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An Oakland jury acquitted one man and has yet to reach a verdict on the charges against another involved in the 2016 Ghost Ship warehouse fire Thursday.

On Dec. 2 2016, a 10,000 square-foot Oakland warehouse, converted into an artist collective, broke into flames and killed 36 people during a house music concert. The collective, Ghost Ship, had been subject to at least 10 code enforcement complaints, and several of its residents were in violation of zoning codes.

Derick Almena, the Ghost Ship’s 49-year-old master tenant, and Max Harris, the 29-year-old creative director, were both charged with 36 counts of involuntary manslaughter in June 2017.

Harris was acquitted and will leave Santa Rita Jail in Dublin, California on Thursday evening, according to Alameda County Sheriff’s Office public information officer Ray Kelly.

The jury’s deliberation process began in July, but restarted in August when Judge Trina Thompson dismissed three jurors on suspicion of misconduct.

Almena will remain in custody until Oct. 4 “at a minimum,” according to Kelly.

Check back for updates.

 

 

 

Alex Casey is the city news editor. Contact her at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @acasey_dc.