Reporting Derek Valcourt
BALTIMORE (WJZ)—On the stand. The man behind the controversial Election Night robocall begins telling his side of the story to jurors.
Derek Valcourt explains that political consultant Julius Henson has a lot to say.
Henson wants to convince jurors the Bob Ehrlich campaign chose not to take his advice, and that the campaign is ultimately responsible for that controversial robocall.
Emerging from the courthouse after his first full week of trial, Henson had few words for reporters.
“It’s going well. It’s OK,” he said.
Henson took the stand in his own defense Friday afternoon detailing for jurors his political consulting work for the failed 2010 campaign to elect Republican Bob Ehrlich in his run for governor.
“I am on the stand testifying, and I think that should remain in the courthouse, but I’ll be happy to talk to you when my testimony is over,” Henson said.
When Henson returns to court on Monday he will be asked about his role in the controversial Election Night robocall, which prosecutors say amounted to illegal fraud.
The calls went out to registered Democrats before polls closed, suggesting there was no need to go vote because Democrat Governor Martin O’Malley was already winning.
The robocall said: “Relax. Everything is fine. The only thing left is to watch it on TV tonight.”
Henson admits he wrote that call but says it was Ehrlich’s campaign manager Paul Schurick who chose not to include the legally required tag line identifying it was really coming from the Ehrlich campaign.
Friday morning jurors heard from Greg Massoni, a senior adviser and confidant to Gov. Ehrlich who testified he had no knowledge of the robocall until after the election was over.
Henson predicts he will be vindicated.
“I’m fortified by thousands of people praying all over this country and we’ll be victorious,” he said.
Henson will return to the witness stand Monday morning to continue his testimony.
Jurors will likely begin deliberations early next week.
Henson faces the possibility of up to 12 years in prison. Ehrlich’s campaign manager Schurick was sentenced to home detention and community service on the same charges.