• Jurors in Trump's hush-money trial asked the judge to re-read his 'rain metaphor' instructions.
  • The jury is weighing 34 counts of falsifying business records related to Stormy Daniels.
  • Jurors seem to want clarity on how to gauge Trump's intent in the hush-money scheme.

The jury in Donald Trump's criminal hush-money trial knows what it wants.

In another note to the judge at 9:32 a.m. Thursday, jurors asked the judge to re-read a portion of his instructions starting from what they called "the rain metaphor."

It suggests the jury is examining Trump's intent as it weighs whether to find the former president guilty.

The jurors are considering 34 counts of whether Trump falsified business records as part of a scheme to cover up a hush-money payment to Stormy Daniels ahead of the 2016 presidential election. They began deliberating at around 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday.

In the afternoon, they asked for the judge to read back four parts of the testimony. The segments indicate they were deep into the details of the alleged conspiracy to influence the 2016 election by keeping Daniels quiet about an affair she says she had with Trump.

The jury also asked New York Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan to read back the entire hourlong jury instructions they received.

But on Thursday morning, they narrowed down the request to only instructions on how to evaluate the evidence in the case.

The "rain metaphor," which the jury note referenced, is often used by judges in jury instructions.

It tells the jurors that they can infer certain facts from the surrounding circumstances using their common sense.

"Suppose you go to bed one night when it is not raining, and when you wake up in the morning, you look out your window. You do not see rain, but you see that the street and sidewalk are wet and that people are wearing raincoats and carrying umbrellas," Merchan told the jurors. "Under those circumstances, it may be reasonable to infer — that is, conclude — that it rained during the night."

"In other words, the fact of it having rained while you were asleep is an inference that might be drawn from the proven facts of the presence of the water on the street and sidewalk, and people in raincoats and carrying umbrellas," he continued.

Jurors are paying close attention

Trump, who is 77 years old, does not use email or send text messages.

There is no evidence that he ever typed up a memo saying something like, "I'm going to falsify documentation of payments to my lawyer Michael Cohen in order to violate section 17-152 of the New York Election Law, also breaking campaign finance and tax laws along the way."

So in order to find Trump guilty, jurors would need to infer his role in the hush-money scheme based on the testimony and documents in the case surrounding him.

Thursday morning's jury request may show that jurors are trying to parse out that evidence.

As Merchan re-read the instructions Thursday, they appeared to be at heightened attention.

Juror 3, a young corporate lawyer, and Juror 5, a charter school teacher, each leaned forward in their seats in the front row of the jury box as Merchan read the so-called "rain metaphor."

Former US President Donald Trump speaks to the press in the hallway outside the courtroom. Foto: MARK PETERSON/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Juror 4, a young male security engineer who sat between them, took notes.

Also taking notes was Juror 7, a middle-aged lawyer who had said during jury selection that "I'm a litigator, so I take the law seriously and I take the judge's instructions very seriously."

As the judge described how to infer Trump's intent "beyond a reasonable doubt," all of them scribbled hard.

Meanwhile, Juror 12, a physical therapist, held her hand to her chin as if she were concentrating during the recitation of the rain metaphor. And Juror 10 took notes as the judge explained how Trump may have violated campaign finance laws — a possible path to finding him guilty of the business falsification charges.

After the judge completed his recitation of the jury instructions, two of the court stenographers re-read portions of the testimony. They playacted as the questioning lawyers and the witnesses who previously took the stand.

A middle-aged court stenographer with glasses sat in the witness stand seat and played the roles of ex-National Enquirer publisher David Pecker and of Michael Cohen.

The jurors had also asked if they could have a pair of headphones with a 35-millimeter jack so that they could listen to audio recordings included on the laptop of evidence they have with them in the jury deliberations room.

The judge said they could. And that he'd throw in speakers, too.

Read the original article on Business Insider