WNYC's Bob Hennelly is an award-winning investigative journalist. While at WNYC he has reported on a wide gamut of major public policy questions ranging from immigration and homeland security to power outages and utility mergers.
A federal judge has declared a mistrial in the case of a New York City Council member accused of misdirecting hundreds of thousands of dollars in taxpayer money meant for community projects.
U.S. District Judge Robert Patterson let the jury quit Friday afternoon after it sent him the latest of several notes saying it couldn't decide on the guilt or innocence of 60-year-old Democrat Larry Seabrook.
U.S. attorney Preet Bharara said he intends to retry the case.
The jury sent a note to the judge late Thursday that said after a full week of deliberations they remained deadlocked on all 12 counts. The jurors also told the court that "due to economic hardship" to themselves and their employers they could not continue deliberations into a second week on Monday.
"While the jury was unable to reach a unanimous verdict in the trial of Councilman Seabrook," he said in a statement, "we fully intend to retry the case and prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the Councilman criminally exploited his official position in order to enrich his friends, his family, and himself."
Patterson sent the jury a note Friday explaining they did not have to come to a consensus on all the counts but could reach a verdict on just one. That note was responded to with yet another note declaring their deadlocked status.
With the Associated Press