Juror excused from trial of Elizabeth Holmes because of his religious beliefs
The juror, a Buddhist, said the lawsuit worried him.
A juror was excused from Elizabeth Holmes’ trial on Wednesday, citing religious beliefs.
“I’m a Buddhist, so I practice for compassion, you know, for love and forgiveness,” Juror No. 4 told US District Judge Edward Davila.
She told the court she grew anxious anticipating how Holmes would be “punished by the government” if she were to find him guilty.
“I keep thinking about it every day,” she added. She was excused at the request of the prosecution; the defense did not object.
The deputy juror who was to replace juror No.4, however, also expressed his concern. “She’s so young,” the Alternative told Davila, referring to Holmes.
“This is my first time in this situation and this is her future,” she said. “I don’t know if I’m 100% ready to participate in something like this.”
Davila explained how the process would work and how jurors would have no part in Holmes’ conviction – adding that “punishment” should not be considered at all while the jury is deliberating. None of the lawyers objected to her remaining on the jury, and the judge ruled that she was fit to take the place of juror No.4. She took the place of jury n ° 4 Wednesday morning.
Now that juror # 4 is excused, 15 jurors remain: 12 active and three alternates.
Holmes founded Theranos in 2003 and claimed the company was developing blood testing technology that could perform hundreds of blood tests using just a few drops of blood. Holmes and Theranos ‘former COO Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani, also Holmes’ ex-boyfriend, face a dozen charges of wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud in the framework of what prosecutors are calling a multi-million dollar ploy to defraud investors and patients.
Originally, the couple were to be tried together, but in December 2019 the trials were halted due to Balwani’s abuse allegations against Holmes, which Balwani has denied.
This week and last, jurors heard from the former director of the Theranos lab, Dr Adam Rosendorff, who claims to have warned Holmes about the failures of the Theranos device. He told the court he tried to delay the launch of the Walgreens company, begging “nervous” Holmes, who continued nonetheless. In cross-examination, defense attorney Lance Wade attempted to discredit Rosendorff.
A full recap of last week’s proceedings is available on ABC News’ “The Dropout: Elizabeth Holmes on Trial” podcast, for free on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music, or wherever you listen to podcasts.