Continue Reading Below
Judge Andrew Napolitano said on Thursday that former Trump adviser Roger Stone deserves a new trial in light of resurfaced tweets that indicate partisanship and “inherent bias” from a jury member against Stone.
Former Memphis City Schools Board President Tomeka Hart revealed Wednesday that she was the foreperson of the jury that convicted Stone on obstruction charges last year -- and soon afterward, her history of Democratic activism and a string of her anti-Trump, left-wing social media posts came to light.
“[Stone is] absolutely entitled to a new trial with a member of a jury making these types of revelations about the politics involved in the decisions to prosecute him,” Napolitano told “Fox & Friends.”
Hart even posted specifically about the Stone case before she voted to convict, as she retweeted an argument mocking those who considered Stone's dramatic arrest in a predawn raid by a federal tactical team to be excessive force. She also suggested President Trump and his supporters are racist and praised the investigation conducted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, which ultimately led to Stone's prosecution.
Continue Reading Below
Independent journalist Mike Cernovich, not CNN, then first reported that a slew of Hart's other publicly available Twitter and Facebook posts readily suggested a strong political bias. Some of Hart's posts were written as Stone's trial was in progress.
Hart, who unsuccessfully ran for Congress as a Democrat in 2012, quoted someone in an August 2017 tweet referring to Trump as a member of the KKK.
In January 2019, she retweeted a post by pundit Bakari Sellers, who noted that "Roger Stone has y'all talking about reviewing use of force guidelines," before suggesting that racism was the reason for all the attention Stone's arrest had received from conservatives.
Napolitano said that he presided over 150 jury trials and “most were criminal.”
“It is the duty of the judge to ensure that both the government and defendant get a fair trial and if the judge discovers afterward that there was a built-in inherent bias on the part of a member of a jury against the defendant, that is an automatic trigger for a new trial,” he explained.
“She’s going to have to call those jurors back in and interrogate them or make a decision on the spot,” Napolitano said.