The Corner

The Libby Trial — Heading Toward a Hung Jury?

The judge has just made his statement to the jury.  It turns out that one of the jury members asked for a dictionary, and the judge explained to them that they could not be given one.  “I try as best I can to use common language in the instructions I give to jurors,” Walton told them.  “If there is any wording in the instructions that you need defined, those have to come from the court.  You can’t look in the dictionary and get what the dictionary definition is.”

The more important thing going on is the growing concern over the length of the jury’s deliberations.  Today was Day Seven, and the jury has asked to be let out early tomorrow, which will be Day Eight.  Everyone, including Judge Walton, has taken that as a sign that jurors know they won’t have a verdict tomorrow, meaning that deliberations will stretch at least into Day Nine on Monday.

Before the jury came into the courtroom, the judge was talking to the defense and prosecution and observed that the jury was dressed casually today — a standard clue that jurors did not expect to have a verdict, which would be announced in the courtroom with the media present.  “They did not dress today, so I knew there would not be a verdict,” Walton said.  Then Walton mentioned the early-release note for tomorrow and said, “I assume they will not have a verdict tomorrow, either.”

Most observers think that protracted negotiations point to the possibility of a hung jury and a mistrial, as jurors realize they are unable to reach a decision.  The case is somewhat complicated, but it’s not that complicated; a verdict could reasonably be expected by now.  Nevertheless, jurors have not told the judge that they can’t reach a verdict, and even if that happens, the judge would undoubtedly tell them to go back and try harder, leading to more deliberations.

Byron York — Byron York is is the author of The Vast Left Wing Conspiracy.

Most Popular


Ezra Klein’s Intellectual Demagoguery

Ezra Klein wants you to know that he doesn’t think Sam Harris is a racist. “I’m not here to say you’re racist, I don’t think you are,” Klein explains in a two-hour debate with Harris on the latter’s podcast, Waking Up. “We have not called you one.” No, not at all. Klein is telling the truth ... Read More

The Scholarship/Activism Balance — A Rejoinder

The Martin Center recently published an article by sociology professor Fabio Rojas, in which he argued that professors should maintain the right balance between their teaching and scholarship on the one hand, and activism on the other. In today's article, the Center's Jay Schalin pushes back somewhat. Schalin ... Read More

The Book Comey Wanted to Write

Making the click-through worthwhile: the book James Comey had wanted to write, Facebook starts to feel useless to some writers, an infamous D.C. city councilman manages to make everything worse, and Hillary Clinton’s campaign finds its wish granted. What Did James Comey’s First Draft of A Higher ... Read More
Film & TV

Pro-Life Feminist

My paisana at the Human Life Review are hosting an event in NYC on Thursday, May 3, at the Sheen Center (18 Bleeker Street) for the airing of director Jim Hanon’s half-hour documentary, Pro-Life Feminist. After the viewing, he’ll join the trio of castmates -- Destiny Herndon-De La Rosa, Aimee Murphy, and ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Good News for Pompeo

Looks like he's in, as he should be. But this fight has been a hint of what life will be like for Trump if the Democrats somehow take the Senate -- they'd refuse to confirm anyone for anything. Read More