Stewart has failed to show that Chappell Hartridge’s answers on a jury questionnaire were “intentionally false,” the U.S. attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York wrote. Hartridge may have believed he was not required to disclose his 1997 arrest on domestic violence allegations because the charges were dropped and the case was sealed.
Stewart’s lawyers also cannot support their claim that they would have sought to strike Hartridge from the jury if they had known about his arrest, the prosecutors argued. They noted that the defense failed to challenge at least 15 other potential jurors who reported arrests or court appearances. At least one of the 15 prospective jurors said he had been in court for domestic violence and had been repeatedly questioned by law enforcement, the prosecutors wrote.
Hartridge was the most outspoken member of the jury that convicted Stewart on March 5 of conspiracy, obstruction and lying to federal officials about her sale of stock in ImClone Systems Inc. He gave an informal press conference and appeared in numerous media outlets calling the conviction a “victory for the little guy.”
Last week, Stewart’s lawyers asked for a new trial, arguing in a written motion that Hartridge was biased against women in general , and Stewart in particular, and lied to get on the jury.
“Hartridge is a man with a checkered history, who deliberately concealed his prior experiences with the legal system so that he could empower the ‘little man’ and profit from the process,” wrote the defense team led by Robert G. Morvillo. The defense lawyers also accused Hartridge of embezzling money from a youth baseball league and of failing to disclose that he had been sued at least three times.