Chicago Sun-Times
Inside the Rod Blagojevich investigation and related cases

Government wraps up closing argument; Urges jury to find Blagojevich brothers guilty on all counts

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Reporting with Natasha Korecki, Dave McKinney and Abdon Pallasch

Before wrapping up his closing argument, prosecutor Chris Niewoehner laid out each of the counts for the jurors on an overhead screen.

Count by count, he explains what's being charged, the elements of the crime, and, in bullet points, highlights their evidence.

Rod looks somber and serious throughout this. He's leaning forward, staring at the prosecutor, occasionally clasping his hands or biting his lower lip.

Niewoehner finishes his argument around 2:05 by calling on the jury to find the defendants guilty on "each and every" count.

"(Rod Blagojevich) knew exactly what was happening," the prosecutor says. "And now you do, too."

When the prosecutor finished, Rod turned to his daughters, smiled, and mouthed something to his youngest daughter, Annie, as Patti passed her hand over the 7-year-old's hair.

He then exchanged words with his older daughter, Amy, before turning attention to remarks by the lawyer for his older brother.

Attorney Michael Ettinger is now giving his closing argument for Robert Blagojevich.

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I think the coverage here has been the best I have seen on his trial, but I agree with Paul, the point is to tell us exactly how the prosecution argued its case on close -- we all knew they would say, convict him. Perhaps there will be a longer story which lays it all out. Since many of us have trouble finding an overt act which isn't more talk, or heaven's to Betsy, research, I'd like to know if the prosecution is telling the jury something we are missing. Also, Zagel (oh, surprise) interrupts the defense and tells them to wrap it up, but the prosecution looks to be over time by quite a bit -- did he say anything to them? Interrupt them?

You're telling us the prosecutor explained each count -- but you're not telling us what he said. The fact that a lawyer makes a final argument is not news -- what was it? That's like saying the Cubs played the ninth inning of a game. Duh.

Is there a link somewhere to the jury demographics:

race/ethnicity, age, gender, education, profession.

The reality of the entire exercise is not guilt or innocence, but rather the potential for a juror to hold out for acquittal on all counts. Were it not for the 11th hour dismissal of jurors jduging George Ryan, he may never have been convicted by the jury charged with determining his fate.

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This page contains a single entry by Sarah Ostman published on July 26, 2010 2:10 PM.

Blagojevich trial: Closing arguments running long was the previous entry in this blog.

Defense attorney: Robert Blagojevich a "person of honor" is the next entry in this blog.

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