Blago Jury Deadlocked
The jury in the trial of former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich is telling the Judge it can’t come to a verdict:
They are deadlocked — but only they know how seriously.
On their 11th day of talks, a federal jury deliberating in former Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s corruption trial indicated Wednesday they could not reach a unanimous verdict on all the counts, and according to one attorney, told the judge they could not deliberate any further on at least some of the charges.
“In a situation where jurors can’t agree on given counts, what should the next logical step be?” jurors in Rod Blagojevich’s case asked in a note, only part of which which was read in court. “We’ve gone beyond reasonable attempts without rancor. We now ask for guidance.”
U.S. District Judge James Zagel sent back a note asking for clarification on where jurors are in deliberations and told them they could return a partial verdict on the counts on which they agree.
Rod Blagojevich faces 24 counts of racketeering, bribery, wire fraud and other crimes, and his brother, Robert, faces four of extortion conspiracy and other charges. Six men and six women, including three military veterans, make up the jury.
“It is also permissible for a jury to return a unanimous verdict on some counts and an inability to return a unanimous verdict on other counts,” Zagel said.
Lawyers will meet at 11 a.m. today to discuss the jury’s response and to decide the next step.
Zagel could order the jury to continue trying to reach consensus, take a partial verdict or declare a mistrial.
Zagel seemed to hint he was unlikely to push jurors much further into deliberations.
Could Blago walk on this, or at least walk to live another day ? It’s looking more and more possible.