Wednesday, June 11, 1997

Harmon, his lawyer play waiting game as jury deliberates

If he is acquitted of 11 federal felony charges, Dan Harmon said Tuesday, he hopes to take his children and grandchildren to Walt Disney World.
"If the verdict comes back wrong, they're likely to be making plans for me," Harmon said as he waited for 12 jurors to decide his fate.
The jury received the case late Monday, after nine days of evidence and arguments before Chief U.S. District Judge Stephen M. Reasoner in Little Rock.
The jury deliberated just over an hour Monday before going home. They returned to the courthouse at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday and worked until about 6 p.m., with a short break for lunch.
Harmon is accused of running the 7th Judicial District Prosecuting Attorney's office as an organized criminal enterprise in violation of the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.
He also faces two counts of possession with intent to distribute cocaine hydrochloride, four counts of conspiracy to manufacture drugs, one of witness tampering and one of retaliation against a witness.
The jury sent one note to Reasoner on Tuesday morning, asking for transcripts of testimony by Harmon and his former wife, Holly DuVall, who testified against the former prosecutor. Reasoner denied the request.
"The one thing I learned in 25 years is you don't know anything about what a jury is doing," Harmon said Tuesday as he awaited the verdict. "You don't know what they're thinking. ... If you guess, you're likely to be wrong."
Harmon and his attorney, Lea Ellen Fowler, spent the day at the courthouse, reading and wandering through the hallways. The prosecutors were absent most of the day.
Harmon has maintained his innocence since his indictment in April, when he called the charges "some thing out of Alice in Wonderland."
Two of his co-defendants, DuVall and John Steward, pleaded guilty to related charges and testified against Harmon. Two more co-defendants, defense attorney Bill Murphy and former 7th Judicial District Drug Task Force head Roger Walls are scheduled for trial on almost identical charges in January.

Copyright 1997, Little Rock Newspapers, Inc. All rights reserved.