A Bucks County jury deliberated for four hours Wednesday without reaching a verdict in the first-degree murder trial of Omar Sharif Cash, a Philadelphia man charged with carjacking and slaying an immigrant carpenter.
The six-man, six-woman jury will resume deliberating Thursday morning.
Cash, 28, faces a possible death sentence for the May 11, 2008, execution-style shooting of Edgar Rosas-Gutierrez on a roadside embankment in Bensalem. If Cash is convicted of first-degree murder, jurors then must decide whether he should die or spend his life in prison.
Regardless of the outcome, Cash also awaits trial in Philadelphia on charges that he murdered a 19-year-old man at a car wash on Frankford Avenue in April 2008.
Philadelphia police were seeking his arrest in that case when Cash allegedly carjacked Rosas-Gutierrez and girlfriend as they left Jalapeño Joe's, a club in the city's Crescentville section.
Cash was desperate for a way out of town when he forced Rosas-Gutierrez, 32, to drive toward Bucks County and raped the man's girlfriend in the backseat of the vehicle, Deputy District Attorney Marc Furber said in his closing argument Wednesday.
The couple were "the perfect victims" for Cash, Furber argued. "They were tools to him. . . . He didn't think they would be missed; they were illegal immigrants."
After shooting Rosas-Gutierrez in the head, Cash resumed brutalizing the woman, Furber said, raping her twice more before she escaped at a New Jersey motel where he had taken her.
The woman, 43, testified about the ordeal last week, sobbing on the witness stand.
"If she was acting, she deserves the Academy Award," Furber said. Yet that is what Cash claimed when he testified on Tuesday.
He said the woman was a prostitute whom he had met at the New Jersey motel through an acquaintance who is a pimp. He denied any involvement in the slaying, and his lawyers suggested the woman had cooperated with police in order to legalize her immigration status and to file a negligence lawsuit seeking damages against Jalapeño Joe's.
"There is not one piece of physical evidence that Mr. Cash committed any crime," defense attorney Charles Jonas told the jury.