Coverage of Ruthann Aron's Trials
'No Contest' Plea Ends 2nd Trial.
Ruthann Aron, the ambitious suburban politician accused of trying to hire a hit man to kill her husband and an attorney, entered a surprise plea of no contest yesterday, abruptly ending her second trial and concluding what a defense lawyer said was one of the "longest falls from grace" in local memory.
Aron Case Returns To Court for 2nd Try.
Onetime U.S. Senate candidate Ruthann Aron returns to a Montgomery County courtroom today to face a retrial on charges that she tried to hire a hit man to kill her husband and a lawyer.
Aron Lawyers Decry Jury Publicity.
Montgomery County politician Ruthann Aron was tentatively scheduled yesterday to be retried May 18 on murder-for-hire charges, but a defense attorney said Aron cannot get a fair jury because of intense publicity over a lone holdout juror in the first trial.
Holdout Juror Says Aron Needs Help.
The lone juror who refused to convict Montgomery County politician Ruthann Aron on murder-for-hire charges said yesterday she thinks that Aron is guilty of plotting two murders but that the onetime U.S. Senate candidate is like most criminals in needing help rather than prison.
Prosecutor Rules Out Any Plea Bargain.
Montgomery County State's Attorney Robert L. Dean ruled out a plea agreement to resolve the murder-for-hire charges against politician Ruthann Aron, whose five-week trial ended Monday with the jury declaring itself deadlocked because of a lone holdout against her conviction. Dean said he plans to retry Aron as soon as possible.
Five-Week Aron Case Ends in Mistrial.
The trial of Montgomery County politician Ruthann Aron ended in a mistrial after 11 jurors were unable to convince a holdout over five days of deliberations that Aron was legally sane when she plotted to kill her husband and another man.
Jurors in Aron Trial Taking a New Tack.
A Montgomery County jury failed again yesterday, in its fourth day of deliberating, to reach a verdict in the murder-for-hire trial of politician Ruthann Aron and will return Monday to resume what several courtroom veterans called the longest deliberations they could recall.
Jury Without Verdict After Third Day.
Concern over a deadlock continued to loom yesterday as a Montgomery County jury failed for a third day to reach a verdict in the murder-for-hire trial of politician Ruthann Aron. But the judge said he believes the panel can still reach agreement.
No Verdict for Second Day in Aron Trial.
A Montgomery County jury failed for a second day to reach a verdict in the murder-for-hire trial of politician Ruthann Aron, raising the possibility that the panel is deadlocked.
Aron Jury Recesses After Eight Hours.
A Montgomery County jury recessed after deliberating for eight hours and failing to reach a verdict in the murder-for-hire trial of former politician and millionaire Potomac developer Ruthann Aron.
Aron's Fate Now Rests With Jury.
The jury of 10 women and two men will have to sort through almost a month of testimony from 47 witnesses. Much of the testimony contained complex and often conflicting opinions from experts debating Aron's mental health.
Drama Meets Comedy at Aron Trial.
Most of the four weeks of Ruthann Aron's murder-for-hire trial focused on mind-numbing testimony about the politician's brain. But there were moments of drama, sadness and even lighthearted fun.
Experts Differ on Aron's Inkblot Tests.
Jurors in the Montgomery County politician's murder-for-hire trial watched as psychologists and neuropsychologists alternated taking the witness stand to argue that the other side's experts were simply wrong.
Aron Tapes Used to Rebut Defense.
Proof that Montgomery County politician Ruthann Aron was thinking clearly when she tried to hire a hit man can be found in her own words, despite Aron's insanity defense, a neurologist testified for the prosecution.
Prosecution Argues Aron Faked Tests.
Ruthann Aron faked her answers on psychological tests to exaggerate symptoms of serious mental illness after she was arrested in a murder-for-hire plot last spring, a psychologist testified for the prosecution.
Aron's Attorneys Rest Their Case.
Attorneys for Ruthann Aron rested their case in her murder-for-hire trial, concluding an ambitious but risky defense strategy that some legal experts said stretches Maryland's definition of insanity.
Prosecutor, Doctor Debate Aron's Condition.
Prosecutors and a defense neurologist bickered over whether Ruthann Aron carefully plotted the murder of her husband and a Baltimore lawyer or rushed recklessly into the failed scheme partly because of a mental disorder that deprived her of "executive functioning" ability.
Aron's Mother Describes Abusive Home.
Ruthann Aron's mother painted a grim picture in court of her daughter growing up in a violent, chaotic, sexually abusive household -- testimony defense attorneys hope will bolster claims that Aron was driven uncontrollably to seek a hit man to kill her husband and a Baltimore lawyer.
Psychologist Testifies Aron Not Faking.
A psychologist, seeking to rebut prosecution assertions that Ruthann Aron tried to appear "crazy" as a defense against murder-for-hire charges, testified that Aron "is not faking."
Doctor Tells of 'Subtle' Brain Damage.
A doctor testifying for the defense said that a neurologist found "subtle" signs of brain damage in Ruthann Aron after her arrest in June. But the doctor conceded under cross-examination that another neurologist found no such signs.
Psychiatrist: Aron Asserted Abuse.
A psychiatrist who visited Ruthann Aron after her arrest on murder-solicitation charges testified that Aron regressed into a "primitive state" during a jail therapy session and asserted for the first time that her father had sexually abused her.
Psychiatrist Recalls Aron's Rage in 1970s.
Ruthann Aron suffered symptoms of a mental disorder 20 years ago that could have led her to confuse long-held rage against her father with aggressive feelings toward her husband, a defense psychiatrist testified.
Husband Says He Believes Ruthann Aron Is Mentally Ill.
Even after his wife tried to hire a hit man to kill him, Barry Aron said, "a part of him" still loves Ruthann Aron, and he can make sense of her actions only by believing that she is mentally ill.
Aron Tells of Changes in Wife's Behavior.
It was only after Ruthann Aron was arrested that Barry Aron realized his volatile wife of 30 years had become "uncomfortably calm" two weeks before his slaying allegedly was to be carried out, the Potomac urologist testified.
Jury Hears Tape of Aron Plotting Deaths.
For more than an hour, Ruthann Aron, 55, held her head in her hands as jurors listened to the most dramatic tapes yet of Aron negotiating a $20,000 contract on the lives of her husband and Arthur G. Kahn, a Baltimore lawyer.
Jury Hears Aron Tapes.
When Ruthann Aron started putting out feelers for a hit man, she was set on "vengeance" against two lawyers whom she wanted "eliminated," said
William H. Mossburg Jr., Aron's go-between.
'Just Be Careful,' Aron Says on Tape. Excerpts from the transcript of a June 4, 1997, telephone conversation between Ruthann Aron and William H. Mossburg Jr.
Jury Selected for Aron Trial.
A jury of 10 women and two men was chosen to decide whether former U.S. Senate candidate Ruthann Aron is a devious criminal or a mentally ill woman who cannot be held responsible for her alleged crimes.
Judge Rules to Allow Aron Tapes at Trial: A Montgomery County judge denied a pretrial defense motion to throw out secretly made tape recordings of what prosecutors say is Ruthann Aron trying to hire a hit man to kill her husband and a political enemy.
Aron's Murder-for-Hire Trial Pits Top Local Legal Teams. The trial of a former U.S. Senate candidate promises made-for-television drama combining a battle over Maryland's insanity defense with a dose of Montgomery County politics.
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