The judge in Harvey Weinstein’s criminal trial has sent the jury back into deliberations Friday afternoon after learning that the 12-person panel asked if they could be hung on the first and/or third charges, for predatory sexual assault, and unanimous on the three remaining counts.
Deliberations ended without a verdict and will resume again on Monday.
The disgraced producer, who pleaded not guilty at his indictment, faces two charges of predatory sexual assault and one charge each for first- and third-degree rape and a first-degree criminal sexual act stemming from the accounts of three women: Miriam Haley (née Mimi Haleyi), Jessica Mann, and Annabella Sciorra.
Haley, a former production assistant for the Weinstein-produced TV show “Project Runway,” testified that Weinstein had orally sexually assaulted her at his SoHo apartment in 2006 — an account that formed the basis of the first-degree criminal sexual act charge and half of the first predatory sexual assault charge. Mann, a former aspiring actress and hairdresser, said she had been raped by Weinstein at the DoubleTree hotel in Manhattan in 2013, making up the fourth and fifth charges — first- and third-degree rape — as well as half of the second predatory sexual assault charge.
To fulfill the requirements of the predatory sexual assault charge, which requires that the prosecution prove the defendant forcibly raped at least two people, Sciorra’s account was paired with Haley’s and Mann’s for the two separate predatory sexual assault charges. Sciorra testified that Weinstein barged into her Gramercy Park home around 1993, raped her, and then orally sexually assaulted her.
Throughout the trial, Weinstein’s defense — led by attorneys Donna Rotunno, Damon Cheronis, and Arthur Aidala — argued that these encounters were all consensual and that the women were only relabeling the incidents as assault years after the fact. Weinstein’s attorneys also pointed to several friendly emails that Haley and Mann had sent to Weinstein after the alleged assaults to attack the credibility of the women.
But the prosecution, led by assistant district attorneys Joan Illuzzi and Meghan Hast, portrayed Weinstein as a Hollywood titan who used his power to take advantage of and manipulate young women seeking entry into the entertainment industry.
Read original story Harvey Weinstein Jury Deadlocked on 2 Key Counts, Sent Back to Deliberate Further At TheWrap