Jurors in the Oklahoma City bombing trial failed to reach a verdict for a second day Saturday, as Timothy McVeigh’s lawyer called the length of deliberations “a victory for the system” and victims’ relatives prayed for justice.
The jury, which has spent a total of 15-1/2 hours behind closed doors, planned to reconvene this morning.
“There has been no communication from the jury today, and they are ready to recess,” U.S. District Judge Richard Matsch told attorneys before the seven-man, five-woman panel was brought into court to be dismissed and taken back to the hotel where they are being sequestered.
Jurors appeared tired but not weary. When asked if they wanted to deliberate today, they all nodded, and some answered, “Yes, sir.”
Court officials have declined to say how many hours have actually been spent in deliberations and how much time has been spent on breaks and lunch, which has been brought in.
The jury has had access to all pieces of evidence and requested poster boards and marking pens to assist in the deliberations.
McVeigh, who could get the death penalty if convicted of murder and conspiracy in the blast, summoned lead attorney Stephen Jones to his courthouse lockup late Friday for a talk that lasted well into the night.
“I would say his spirits were upbeat and appropriate,” said Jones, as he returned to his office from a lunch break. “We did talk about the case. We didn’t dwell on what the jury might do. … Certainly he recognizes guilt is one of the options the jury has.”
As for the length of the deliberations, Jones said, “It’s a victory for the system that the jury is carefully studying the evidence and weighing the decision - the important decision they have to make.”