The Upshot

Alternate juror Denise Speight denies flirting with John Edwards

The Upshot

The trial of John Edwards is over. But the courtroom drama lives on, in the question of whether or not an alternate juror was flirting with John Edwards.

During the trial, the alternate jurors were brought in with the rest of the jury for instructions, but raised eyebrows with their color-coordinated outfits (yellow one day, red the next)—and one juror's seeming flirtation with the defendant.

That person, Denise Speight, described by ABC News as an "attractive young woman," denied any hanky-panky.

But some reporters picked up on some undeniable energy between the former senator and the alternate.  ABC News noticed the dynamic in its report.

Since the alternates were identified last Thursday, it has been impossible to ignore the dynamic between Edwards and one of the female alternates, an attractive young woman with jet-black hair, who seems to have been flirting with Edwards for days.

The juror clearly instigated the exchanges. She smiles at him. He smiles politely back at her. She giggles. He blushes.

The Washington Post agreed that the friendly young woman was "smiling at Edwards and flipping her hair in what seems to some to be a flirtatious manner." Adding the catty comment, "On Friday, she wore a revealing red top with a single strap and an exposed right shoulder."

Speight said of the reports, "I thought it was the funniest thing I have ever heard." She added, "Actually, I was giggling over, I think, the media's reaction, when we walked into the courtroom, over our outfits and color. No intention of flirting with John Edwards, and I don't think he had any intentions of blushing or flirting back with me."

News of the woman's denial drove searches on the Web. Lookups on Yahoo! shot up for "John Edwards jury," "John Edwards juror flirting," and "juror flirts with John Edwards."

Edwards' case--whether the candidate had  misused funds to hide his affair while he ran for president--ended in a mistrial. The 58-year-old said of the outcome, "While I do not believe I did anything illegal, or ever thought I was doing anything illegal, I did an awful, awful lot that was wrong and there is no one else responsible for my sins."

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