CRIMINAL CASE: U.S. v. Turner, Crim. No. 09-542 (N.D. Ill. 2009), moved, No. 09-____ (E.D. N.Y. 2009).

Status: Mistrial declared Dec. 7, 2009; retrial scheduled for Feb. 1, 2010.

On June 3, 2009, blogger and Internet radio host Hal Turner, a white supremacist who broadasct from his home in North Bergen, N.J., surrendered to police for comments on his program that were alleged to constitute threats to two Connecticut elected officials and a state ethics official (see Connecticut v. Turner).

Two weeks later, the FBI arrested Turner for alleged threats against three judges of the federal 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago. In September, the case was moved to the federal district court in Brooklyn, N.Y., where trial began Dec. 2, 2009.  After a four-day trial, the jury announced that it was deadlocked and Federal Judge Donald Walter declared a mistrial.  A retrial is scheduled for Feb. 1, 2010.

His lawyer is arguing that the comments were "political hyperbole" protected by the First Amendment.

Links and Court Documents:

U.S. v. Turner (Citizen Media Law Project)
Blogger arrested in threats on federal judges (Chicago Breaking News Center, June 24, 2009)
Tracing Xenophobic Internet Chatter to Its Roots in New Jersey Town (New York Times, June 30, 2009)
Man accused of judge threats called FBI informant (Associated Press, July 28, 2009)

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