A “stunned” former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich was was uncharacteristically tight-lipped after a jury convicted him on 17 of 20 counts of corruption, reports the Chicago Tribune. A federal jury found that Blagojevich brazenly abused the powers of his office in a series of attempted shakedowns captured on undercover government recordings.
The forewoman of the jury told reporters that jurors were confident they had reached a “fair and just” verdict. A woman, known as Juror 103, said Blagojevich's testimony made reaching a verdict a bit more difficult “because he was personable.” Another woman, Juror 140, said she sometimes found Blagojevich's testimony “manipulative.” That same juror said the evidence on the sale of the U.S. Senate seat was the clearest of all the charges because of the abundance of recorded evidence. “We felt he was trying to make a trade for the Senate seat,” she said. The jury took multiple votes at times during the 10 days of deliberations. It convicted Blagojevich on all 11 counts on the sale of the U.S. Senate seat and all three counts on shakedowns of Children's Memorial Hospital and a racetrack executive.