Closing arguments in sweat lodge trial underway

Print
Email
|

by Felicia Fonseca / Associated Press

Video report by Kristine Harrington

Posted on June 15, 2011 at 5:25 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jun 15 at 5:37 PM

CAMP VERDE, Ariz. (AP) - A prosecutor told jurors Wednesday that a self-help author killed three people by ratcheting up the heat inside an Arizona sweat lodge ceremony he led and ignored those who were vomiting, passed out or having trouble breathing.

Yavapai County Attorney Sheila Polk's closing arguments began Wednesday afternoon after the parties spent hours debating jury instructions.

Polk pointed to James Arthur Ray and played a recording of his words as she outlined her case to the jury. She said Kirby Brown, Liz Neuman and James Shore would be alive if not for Ray's conduct leading up to and during the October 2009 ceremony.

Jurors must find that Ray was aware of, and consciously disregarded, a substantial and unjustifiable risk of death to convict him of the three counts of manslaughter.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

Print
Email
|