BOSTON (AP)-- A judge declared a mistrial Wednesday in former Massachusetts treasurer Tim Cahill's corruption case after jurors failed to reach a verdict during seven days of deliberations.
Cahill was accused of scheming to run $1.5 million in taxpayer-funded ads for the state lottery as a means of promoting his sinking 2010 campaign for governor.
He testified that he approved the advertising blitz because he wanted to defend the lottery after the Republican Governors Association ran a series of negative ads attacking him and his management of the lottery.
Former Cahill chief of staff Scott Campbell was acquitted in the case Tuesday.
Judge Christine Roach said Wednesday that she was confident jurors had deliberated thoroughly in Cahill's case and that their communications indicated they were deadlocked. The trial stretched on for six weeks, and jurors deliberated for at least 40 hours.
After the mistrial was declared, Cahill hugged his wife and smiled, then walked down the front row of the courtroom and hugged each of the friends and family members sitting there. He also shook hands with court officers and clerks.
At a press conference Wednesday afternoon, Attorney General Martha Coakley did not say if the case would be retried.
"The jury did not acquit Tim Cahill, they have not acquitted Tim Cahill," said Coakley."We have a hung jury which means Tim Cahill is in the same position as when the indictments were returned."
When reporters asked, Coakley said she could not put a price tag on the trial.
"I don't think you can put a price tag on investigating cases where the evidence brought to us raised serious questions about public integrity," said Coakley. "The allegation here is that $1.5 million dollars of taxpayer money had been misallocated."
Cahill, who oversaw the lottery as treasurer, was charged with conspiracy to use his official position to gain an unwarranted privilege and conspiracy to commit procurement fraud. He faced a maximum of five years in prison.
During the month-long trial, prosecutors portrayed him as a shrewd politician who approved an ad blitz touting the benefits of the lottery to run during the month before the election because he hoped it would boost his independent campaign for governor, which by that point was faltering badly. Cahill was also running separate campaign ads touting his leadership of the lottery.
But Cahill's lawyer, Jeff Denner, said his client decided to run the ads because the lottery had been damaged by a series of attack ads by the Republican governors.
"It was an appropriate advertising response to what was going on," Denner said.
The next conference on the case will be held on Jan. 4, 2013.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
© 2017 Cox Media Group.
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