LawFuel.com – The conflicted world of Oscar-winning actress Jennifer Hudson collided on Friday as she returned to the world from the South Side that she had left before achieving fame, involved in a crime drama that tore her family apart.
Jennifer Hudson in that moment was a grieving daughter from the South Side waiting for justice, her family torn apart by a crime of unimaginable horror.
She bowed her head as the verdict was read, then broke into soft sobs as a Cook County jury convicted her former brother-in-law, William Balfour, of murdering her mother, brother and nephew in October 2008.
As the jury left, Hudson stood on tiptoes and watched them leave, her fiance’s arm wrapped around her waist. No one on the 12-member panel turned back to look at her.
Though Hudson’s celebrity attracted national media to the Chicago courthouse for the 13-day trial, she apparently had little impact on the jury. Several members told reporters that her name was rarely mentioned during deliberations. Their only conversation about her focused on the singer’s testimony and their opinion that it offered little help in reaching a verdict.
¿ “It’s unfortunate this happened to her family, but this was not, for us, the Jennifer Hudson Case,” juror Jacinta Gholston of the south suburbs said. “It was the People of Illinois v. William Balfour.”
Balfour was convicted of fatally shooting Hudson’s mother, Darnell Donerson, 57; her brother, Jason Hudson, 29; and her 7-year-old nephew, Julian King. Prosecutors alleged Balfour was upset that his estranged wife, Hudson’s sister, Julia, was seeing another man.