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Jury deliberates in Hudson family killings

May 10, 2012 • National News


Supporters of Jennifer Hudson arrive at Cook County Criminal Court, Wednesday, May 9, 2012, in Chicago as closing arguments begin in the murder trial of William Balfour. Balfour, is charged in the 2008 murder of Oscar and Grammy winning performer Jennifer Hudson’s mother, brother and nephew. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)

CHICAGO (AP) — Jurors deliberated late into the night Wednesday without reaching a verdict after sitting through sometimes heated and embittered closing arguments at the Chicago trial of the man accused of slaying Oscar-winner Jennifer Hudson’s mother, brother and 7-year-old nephew.

The actress and singer sobbed and dabbed her eyes when prosecutors displayed photos of the bullet-riddled bodies of her three close relatives during closing arguments earlier in the day.

Prosecutors contend Hudson’s former brother-in-law, William Balfour, killed the family members in October 2008 in an act of vengeance against Hudson’s sister, Julia Hudson, to whom he was married but estranged at the time.

The judge at the high-profile trial told jurors they would be sequestered — staying at a nearby hotel overnights until they reached a verdict. They deliberated for more than four hours Wednesday and were scheduled to return to the courthouse to continue deliberations Thursday morning.

With no surviving witnesses to present, prosecutors spent two weeks laying out a largely circumstantial case against Balfour, a 30-year-old one-time gang member.

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