Racehorse owner Bert Vieira is shocked and saddened by a jury's inability to decide whether a police officer was guilty of dangerous driving in a crash that left his wife with brain damage.
After deliberating for less than eight hours the NSW District Court jury was formally discharged in the trial of Senior Constable Harry Little who pleaded not guilty to dangerous driving causing grievous bodily harm.
"We thought it was very straightforward," Mr Vieira said outside Sydney's Downing Centre courts on Friday as he stifled tears.
For almost two-and-a-half-years following the crash, Gai Vieira has been wheelchair-bound unable to move her legs and is fed through a tube in her chest, he said.
"Now that's not fair."
He implored the government to step in to stop highway patrol officers chasing motorists suspected of illegal activity, given Little was in pursuit of an alleged mobile-phone user.
Little reached a maximum speed of 135km/h in the 70-zone before applying his brakes when the then-68-year-old Mercedes driver pulled out along Cronulla's six-lane Kingsway in September 2018.
Ms Vieira's son Trent said his mother was now living like a prisoner in her own body assisted by two carers 24-hours a day.
The jury had been deliberating since Thursday afternoon for about seven-and-a-half hours and was not eligible to reach a majority verdict in which 11 out of the 12 jurors are only required to agree.
Judge Sarah Huggett on Friday said a fourth jury note mentioned the process had been "courteous, open and respectful" but no juror was willing to change their mind or undecided.
"Please don't take that as a failure on your part. You've done what you have been asked to do."
Crown prosecutor Carl Young had earlier asked the jury to find the officer guilty saying his recollection of events surrounding the crash in September 2018 was demonstrably wrong.
The Crown argued Little was driving dangerously in a number of ways including nearly double the speed limit, without police lights or sirens, failing to keep a proper lookout ahead and all the while weaving in and out of traffic.
No witnesses observed him indicating at any point and one driver only became aware of the police car when she heard a "whoosh" past her window.
Little testified that he waited until after passing an L-plater to activate his police lights so as to avoid causing erratic behaviour.
But straight after the crash, he told his supervisor Sergeant Grant Howell that he didn't have a chance to turn on his lights as the woman appeared right in front of him and it happened so quickly, Sgt Howell wrote in his statement two days following the incident.
Little's defence rejected this admission.
Defence barrister Hament Dhanji SC said the awarded officer with no prior criminal history had no reason not to activate his police lights at the point he said he did, and that he honestly believed he had.
While driving in a fully marked police vehicle it was fair for the highway cop not to think someone would pull out in front of him across the roadway and then come to a complete stop straddling two lanes, he said.
Despite errors within his account Little showed a remarkably clear memory regarding key aspects of the event, he submitted.
Immediately after the crash Little expressed concern for the other driver telling a number of officers to make sure she was OK and to get her out of the squashed vehicle.
This shows his preoccupation with the welfare and road safety of others, Mr Dhanji said.
The expected retrial date is yet to be set down.