CLEVELAND (AP) — Federal court jurors are again weighing whether a breakaway Amish group in Ohio committed hate crimes in beard- and hair-cutting attacks.
The jury in Cleveland began a fourth day of deliberations Wednesday in the trial of 16 Amish. Jurors promptly told the judge they had a question and he ordered all parties to gather in court.
The government calls the attacks hate crimes based on religious difference. The defense says it was an internal church dispute and doesn't rise to a criminal level.
Testimony ended last week without any witnesses called for the defense.
Prosecutors say the defendants cut off Amish men's beards and women's hair because the hair carries spiritual significance in their faith.
All the defendants could face lengthy prison terms if convicted.