Time seems to have stood still in Federal Judge George Wu's courtroom. Back in November Dean Steward, the lawyer defending Lori Drew, who was accused of harassing a young girl through a bogus MySpace account, filed for a dismissal. The "Rule 29" grounds were simple:
The government had not put on any evidence showing Drew had even read the MySpace terms of service she was accused of violating, and had not participated sending in the fateful AOL Instant Message that apparently sent Megan Meier, a fragile 13 year old, over the edge to hang herself. (That non-MySpace message had been sent by a teenager who became a government witness enjoying immunity from prosecution.)
At the time (a Friday afternoon), Wu called a long trial recess to consider the
motion, igniting speculation that the case might get tossed before it
even reached the jury. Upon reconvening court, Wu said he needed the
weekend to think it over. Said weekend came and went -- and, later, so
too did closing arguments and a jury decision that mostly ruled against
the government. Jurors found Drew guilty of only three misdemeanors,
and hung on one felony -- which the government would later drop. After
Wu thanked and dimissed the jurors, Steward asked if the judge could
now rule on his dismissal motion -- in effect, to vacate the
"I will think about that," said Wu. "I have to digest the jurors' verdict."
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has come slow. At yesterday's hearing on dismissal motions, Wu said he
needed more time think over Steward's Rule 29 motion. As for when he
would get around to sentencing Drew, Wu did make a decision -- April 30.