Legal consultants monitoring Harvey Weinstein’s trial imagine the jury’s newest be aware on Friday suggests the panel is deadlocked on essentially the most critical fees, predatory sexual assault, however unanimous on responsible verdicts for the rape and felony sexual act counts towards the disgraced mogul.
“This is all very bad news for Weinstein and his defense team — and it could potentially get much worse,” Neama Rahmani, a former federal prosecutor who now runs West Coast Trial Lawyers, informed TheWrap. “The prosecution has to be pretty giddy right now.”
There are, nevertheless, a number of caveats when decoding or speculating on how the jury may very well be deliberating primarily based on that be aware, attorneys who spoke with TheWrap cautioned.
“We don’t know what goes on in the jury room, we don’t know whether they’re understanding the directions, we don’t know the order which they took the charges,” Deborah Tuerkheimer, a former assistant district lawyer within the Manhattan D.A.’s workplace, informed TheWrap. “We will not know how this ends until it ends.”
But with that in thoughts, the be aware, which mentioned, “We the jury request to understand if we can be hung on [counts] 1 and/or 3 but unanimous on the others,” might provide a window into how far the jury has come over the previous 4 days of deliberations.
Weinstein, who has pleaded not responsible, faces 5 fees:
1. Predatory sexual assault (as pertaining to the testimonies of Miriam Haley and Annabella Sciorra)
2. Criminal sexual act within the first diploma (Haley)
3. Predatory sexual assault (as pertaining to the testimonies of Jessica Mann and Sciorra)
4. Rape within the first-degree (Mann)
5. Rape within the third-degree (Mann)
The jurors have been instructed that in the event that they have been to seek out Harvey Weinstein responsible of rely one, predatory sexual assault (pertaining to Haley and Sciorra), they need to not think about rely two. But if the jury finds Weinstein not responsible of predatory sexual assault as a result of the jurors don’t imagine Sciorra’s account, then Weinstein should additionally get a not responsible verdict for rely three, predatory sexual assault (pertaining to Mann and Sciorra). The jury might proceed to contemplate the second cost, felony sexual act within the first diploma, which is tied to Haley’s testimony.
If the jury finds Weinstein responsible of rely three, predatory sexual assault (pertaining to Mann and Sciorra), then the jurors should disregard counts 4 and 5, the 2 rape fees related to Mann’s account. But if the jury finds Weinstein not responsible of the Mann/Sciorra predatory sexual assault cost as a result of they don’t imagine Mann’s account, then the jury should additionally discover Weinstein not responsible of rely 4, rape within the first-degree, and transfer on to the fifth cost, rape within the third-degree.
Rahmani mentioned the be aware might recommend the jury has “unanimously agreed to return guilty verdicts on the non-predatory counts” as a result of they seem like contemplating the predatory sexual assault fees, which require the prosecution to show that Harvey Weinstein raped no less than two individuals.
“If the jurors were unanimous that … the Haley and the Mann rapes didn’t happen, then, by definition, there can be no predatory sexual assault,” Rahmani mentioned. But as a result of the be aware means that they could have come to a unanimous choice on the person Haley and Mann fees, Rahmani mentioned “it sounds like some jurors are uncertain or on the fence or ‘not guilty’ votes when it comes to [Sciorra’s] specific sexual assault.”
Given that the prosecution requested on Friday afternoon that the jury return and proceed deliberating, Rahmani mentioned they’re seemingly desirous to “go for the home run” and get responsible verdicts on the 2 predatory sexual assault fees, which maintain the potential of life sentences.
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