Jurors In Harvey Weinstein Rape Trial Say They’re Deadlocked On 2 Most Serious Charges
Jurors in the Harvey Weinstein rape trial said that they were deadlocked on Friday on the trial’s two most serious charges in a note to the judge.
Jurors asked Judge James Burke on Friday if they would be allowed to be hung on two counts of predatory sexual assault, but reach a unanimous verdict on the three other charges. Predatory sexual assault is punishable by a maximum of life in prison.
One count of predatory sexual assault Weinstein faces is related to Miriam Haley and Annabella Sciorra, the other is related to Jessica Mann and Sciorra. Weinstein is also charged with first-degree criminal sexual act and two counts of rape.
Three other women have also testified as part of the prosecution’s argument that Weinstein had a pattern of attacking young women by using his power in Hollywood.
The judge told the jury of five women and seven men to keep deliberating in order to reach a unanimous verdict on all charges.
“Ladies and gentlemen, I have your note indicating that you have been unable to agree on a verdict. As I told you in my initial instructions, any verdict you return, whether guilty or not guilty, must be unanimous. If you cannot reach a unanimous agreement, you cannot return a verdict, and a new trial will have to be scheduled before a different jury,” said Judge Burke.
The jury’s deliberations ended on Friday at 3 p.m., and will continue on Monday morning.
Weinstein’s lawyers said that they would accept a partial verdict, but the government said that they would not.
In order to convict Weinstein of predatory sexual assault, the jury would have to agree that he raped or sexually assaulted Sciorra, and committed one of the other offenses. Sciorra’s accusations have passed the statute of limitations to stand on their own as sexual assault charges, but they can be used to show a past pattern of sexual assault for Haley and Mann’s accusations of predatory sexual assault.
Weinstein’s lawyers have argued that all of the sexual encounters were consensual. As evidence they have pointed to contact the women have had with Weinstein since the alleged assaults.
Weinstein also faces separate charges of sexual assault and rape in Los Angeles.