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

Blagojevich lawyers: Prosecution was barred from asking Jackson about Lottery

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Reporting with Lark Turner

Rod Blagojevich's lawyers said today they want a mistrial based on Jesse Jackson Jr.'s testimony yesterday.

In a nutshell:

"At sidebar, defense counsel obtained a preliminary ruling from the Court regarding what would open the door to the comment Jackson claims was made by Blagojevich at the Illinois delegation trip in 2003. It was, and is, the defense's position that this claim by Jackson is unduly prejudicial and not relevant to this trial."

The motion says the defense knew about Jackson's allegation and that they didn't make a mistake in putting Jackson on the stand.

"The only decision by the defense that, in retrospect, may have been unwise was to trust the government to abide by the rules and play fair, and to trust that this Court would hold the government to the same standard as the defense," they wrote.

It's the second time the defense has filed for mistrial this week. On Monday, they asked Zagel for a mistrial because of all the objections to their cross-examination of government witnesses. Even as they launched their defense Wednesday, they asked Zagel to acquit Blagojevich of all charges against him.

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8 Comments

David go back to sleep! Your obviously a loyal Blagojevich minion.

Lawyers who know these prosecutors describe them as Hitler's Youth. After observing their strategy and tactics for a long time, I have to agree with that assessment. Everything they've done is disgusting.

yes but if the court rules something can't be asked or is inadmissible they take it very seriously especially when it is the government. The court has held proper procedure and justice so important(to ensure that inocent individuals are protected from misconduct) that to maintain the system people who are clearly guilty have gone free. So it would not be that outragous and the current legal system seems support this sort of action.

I think at very least sanctions should be issued against the prosecutors, it is a mans imprisonment at stake. It really is not relevant, the judge for all his strictness what clear in prevent blagos lawyers from asking things beyond the scope of the prosecutions questioning the same should and must be held for Jacksons testimony, because of this it is not relevant and if they where told they could ask then I think of all the inappropriate things asked this is probably the most prejudicial and really someone should get in a lot of trouble for asking it. In my opinion because of the seriousness of the charges contempt of court would be completely appropriate.

This trial is and always has been stacked against the defense. The judge is so blatant in his bias.

Natasha- Great coverage, and I hope to hear you on WLS again soon. From your vantage point I dont know if you can answer, but is the memorial overflow room packed or is there space? You may not know, just thought I would ask...I will miss you coverage when this is done!

I knew this was coming.

Frankly, the mistrial should be granted. The testimony was prejudicial and irrelevant to the case at hand. Jackson was allowed to impugn the character of Blago (not that that is difficult to do, but still) based on his possible misunderstanding of a situation.

Zagel needs to get control of his courtroom back from the prosecutors. If he is unable or unwilling to do so a new trial should be heard in front of a different judge.

No, the judge should stop the trial because the evidence of his guilt is overwhelming and does not require a trial.

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This page contains a single entry by Natasha Korecki published on May 26, 2011 9:19 AM.

Lawyer: Blagojevich to take the stand today was the previous entry in this blog.

Blagojevich takes the stand is the next entry in this blog.

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