“This is unexpected for all of us,” she said. “Thank you for your patience this morning, it has probably been very frustrating.”
Just before 11am, another juror sent a note saying, “I have a flight booked to fly interstate departing at 17.10 this evening.”
Another note a few hours later said other members of the jury would be unavailable from December 23.
Earlier this week, the jury found Mr Daniels not guilty of five of the charges, relating to one of the girls, after three hours of deliberations on Thursday. They were sent away to keep deliberating on the remaining 21 charges.
Shortly before 2pm, the jurors informed the court they were at “a deadlock” and could not come to a unanimous verdict on any further indictments.
Citing the length of the seven-week trial and the “great deal of evidence” heard, Judge Shead told the jury “to persevere with your deliberations”.
During the trial, jurors were played police interviews of the nine young girls and pre-recorded videos of the girls giving evidence in court. Other witnesses included their parents, police, experts, and workers from Mosman Swim Centre.
Mr Daniels was one of the final witnesses, telling the court the crimes “did not happen”. He said he did not push any student on the vagina, which three girls alleged, never put his hand inside the swimmers of any student, and touched no child on or near the genitals.
Crown prosecutor Karl Prince said those denials should be rejected.
Mr Prince said in a closing address Mr Daniels “opportunistically engaged” in a pattern of offending behaviour “despite the high risk of being caught”, and he did so “for his own sexual gratification.”
More to come
Laura is a crime reporter for The Sydney Morning Herald.