The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

Jurors In Balfour Trial: Jennifer Hudson's Celebrity Not A Factor

By Chuck Sudo in News on May 12, 2012 3:00PM

Jennifer Hudson plays Taste of Chicago July 11. (Photo Credit: Anton Oparin /

The jurors who found William Balfour guilty of the murders of actress/singer Jennifer Hudson's mother, brother and nephew spoke to media shortly after the verdict was announced Friday. To hear them tell it, the verdict wasn't as cut and dried as they expected initially.

Juror Jacinta Gholston told media that, for her and her fellow jurors, the trial wasn't about Jennifer Hudson.

“This was a case about William Balfour. ... And so for us, her celebrity really had nothing to do with it. It’s unfortunate that it was her family but this was not for us the Jennifer Hudson Case. This was the people of Illinois v. William Balfour.”

Juror Tracie Austin concurred and said Hudson's celebrity "didn't say anything" that was important to the case.

While prosecutors and defense attorneys made their cases quickly in court, the jury deliberated the case 18 hours over three days, were sequestered two nights, and were split 9-3 in favor of conviction only hours before the verdict was announced.

Gholston and fellow juror Paula Holcomb both said deliberations were civil, but that they wanted answers to what they believed were holes in William Balfour's timeline.

Balfour's attorney, Amy Thompson, is in the process of filing an appeal and said she would also file a motion for a new trial on June 8.