FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (CNN/WSVN) -- A Florida teen convicted for playing a role in a savage burning attack on another teen is asking for a new trial. This, after a juror claimed race played a role in the conviction. A hearing on the issue took place Wednesday. Now a judge is now considering the request.
Assistant State Attorney Scott Raft said to the judge, "You have people calling each other racist, talking about the fact that I couldn't understand this witness or would you find this way if he were Hispanic, would you believe it if he was black?"
Defense attorney Perry Thurston says, "These ongoing proceedings have been very distressing for the Brewer family. There was a conviction four months ago and we haven't gotten to a sentencing yet. So as you can imagine, it's very difficult, especially since it's been three years since the incident."
Matthew Bent, 18, continues to fight four months after being convicted of aggravated battery for his part in the burning of 15-year-old Michael Brewer three years ago.
Denver Jarvis is already serving time for tossing the alcohol. Jesus Mendez is also in prison for lighting the fluid. Bent was convicted of instigating the attack. But a juror claiming race was a part of deliberations and that deliberations began prematurely has given his attorneys ammunition to try to overturn the convictions. Thurston says, "Clearly there was something that went on and clearly in our opinion there was prejudice against our client."
Problem is, the other jurors disagree. An attorney asks, "So in your opinion there was not really a heated race... at all?" A juror says, "In my opinion definitely not it wasn't a race issue." The attorney responds, "Not that it was a race issue, there was no discussion." The juror responds, "A discussion, no sir."
That attorney says, "Miss says, Miss Bates McCord called her a racist, Miss Bates says that's not true, but every one of the other jurors all said the response and the debate and the discussion that followed was not about an open appeal to race, it was a discussion not to base the verdict on race."
The judge says he'll make a decision by Monday morning.