Lawyers: Long Bulger deliberations don’t necessarily mean doubt

bulger whitey bulger boston
James “Whitey” Bulger seen in a state police surveillance image taken in 1980.
Credit: US Attorney’s office

A group of 12 men and women are spending this week sitting in a room in South Boston deciding if James “Whitey” Bulger should be found guilty of his alleged crimes.

The jury in the trial of the 83-year-old alleged mob boss, who is accused of instilling fear in the Southie neighborhood, finished its first day of deliberations Tuesday without reaching a verdict.

After spending more than five hours deliberating Tuesday, the jury will get back to work Wednesday morning.

Legal experts said that, generally, the longer a jury takes before reaching a verdict, the more favorable it becomes for the defense. However, the Bulger case is complicated and unique with its 32-count indictment.

“They have to stop and look at every single one of those alleged counts and review them so it could take some time,” said Brad Bailey, a former state and federal prosecutor who currently works as a criminal defense lawyer in Boston. “They also have a lot of exhibits to go over.”

More than 70 witnesses testified during more than seven weeks of the trial. Also, more than 800 exhibits were introduced as evidence.

If the jurors remain inside the jury room again on Wednesday, it might be that they are struggling with legal definitions rather than reasonable doubt.

“If the jury is out a long time, I don’t think it’s because they would be possessed with a great deal of reasonable doubt,” said Boston-area attorney William D. Kickham. “Some of these charges concerning racketeering and money laundering can be very complicated for a lay person to understand.”

Whenever the jury does finish with its deliberation, it will likely come back with guilty pleas, lawyers said.

Bailey said the government presented a compelling case and that he believes the evidence went more smoothly than even the prosecutors likely anticipated.

“It would certainly be a surprise if they came back with anything other than guilty verdicts,” said Bailey. “However, you never know, because all it takes is one juror out of 12 to hang up an entire case.”

Follow Michael Naughton on Twitter @metrobosmike.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Memorial held for Sean Collier, MIT police officer…

More than 1,600 people gathered at MIT on Friday for a memorial service for Sean Collier, the police officer shot to death a year ago in the aftermath of the…

National

Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.

International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

Entertainment

Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

NHL

NHL video highlights & analysis: Red Wings dump…

NHL video highlights & analysis: Red Wings dump Bruins in Game 1

MLB

MLB video highlights: Orioles top Red Sox, 8-4…

John Lackey roughed up for second straight outing

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox score two in…

Lester shines in Red Sox win over White Sox

Sports

2014 Boston Marathon preview: Elite American, International runners…

2014 Boston Marathon: Elite American, International runners to watch

Tech

VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.

Tech

#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.