Jurors in the John Wiley Price corruption trial deliberated for four hours Friday and went home for the weekend.
Price is charged with bribery, tax and mail fraud.
There is still no verdict. That's 19-hours of deliberations and still no decision. So what's going on in the jury room and in the minds of the twelve jurors? It's still too early to say whether no verdict after three days is a concern.
Several veteran attorneys in the past few days have told it's not unusual for a jury to take 5 days or more to reach a verdict on a case of this complexity and magnitude. If next week at this time we still don't have a verdict, what may be developing is a hung jury.
Meanwhile Commissioner Price was seen outside of the federal courthouse Friday morning looking relaxed and casually signing some papers. A working standing next to him was identified as a Dallas County employee. He was apparently getting the Commissioner to sign a county document of some sort.
If so, that's the Commissioner still being the Commissioner and diligently still doing his job. Sources also say Price's tell me his legal team, over the past three days, has been relaxed as well for whatever reason.
Why is that? We don't know. Some speculate the jury maybe hung up on something significant. Former Federal Prosecutor and Dallas attorney Aaron Wiley says based on the complexity of this case. He says the problems the prosecution has experienced throughout, especially with the judge, has been so problematic that the public should not rule out the possibility of a hung jury.
He suggests the prosecution might have tried too hard to convict Price. "To keep it simple is always better," said Wiley. "You promise a little and deliver a lot more. That is the essence, in my humble opinion, of being a good prosecutor. You don't promise people a bunch and then deliver a little." Keep in mind also, this jury could go not just days, but weeks without a verdict. Many feel the longer the trial goes, the better it is for the defense.