The jury has reached a verdict in the trial of Jodi Arias, and it will be read at 4:30pmET today.
For HLN, it will be the biggest story since the verdict in the Casey Anthony trial in July 2011. That day delivered the highest ratings in HLN’s history.
Arias has already propelled HLN to strong ratings over the last few months, often topping both sister network CNN and MSNBC, and even occasionally Fox News in some hours. HLN also became a part of the trial, with correspondent Jean Casarez taking the stand to be quizzed about a scene she saw outside the courthouse. Then there is the Twitter account in Jodi Arias’ name, managed by her friend. The account criticized HLN and Nancy Grace for its coverage.
Expect live coverage on the cable news channels, particularly HLN (control room shot from just before the verdict, below) and CNN, which have covered the trial extensively in primetime on both channels. Fox News and MSNBC will also cover the verdict live.
Update: At 4:32, Nancy Grace says that there is “a fly in the ointment,” as things are running two minutes late.
“Justice is a couple of minutes late, six minutes to be exact”– Grace at 4:36.
THE VERDICT: At 4:49pmET, Arias is found guilty of first degree murder.
“There is a verdict, guilty on murder one,” Grace says, tearing up on camera. “What a dichotomy, I can hear in my ear the quietness in the courtroom as the verdict is read and I can hear the cheers of the crowd behind me as the verdict is read.”