GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) — The ninth day of deliberations in John Edwards’ campaign fraud trial took a bizarre turn Thursday when the judge mistakenly believed the jurors had reached a verdict on all six counts.
Instead, the jury told the judge they had a unanimous decision on only one charge involving money from wealthy heiress Rachel “Bunny” Mellon.
Edwards is accused of masterminding a plan to use money from Mellon and another wealthy donor to hide his pregnant mistress as he ran for president in 2008.
Edwards appeared happy and smiled at his family. His attorneys argued for a mistrial on the other counts and they wanted the verdict announced.
The verdict was not read, and U.S. District Judge Catherine C. Eagles told the jurors to keep deliberating. She apologized for calling them into the courtroom and then sending them back for more discussions.
“I was obviously under the impression you had reached a verdict on all six counts,” Eagles said.