What You’ve Missed in the Theranos Trial of Elizabeth Holmes

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California today

The erstwhile Silicon Valley darling faces up to 20 years successful situation if convicted.

Soumya Karlamangla

Oct. 12, 2021, 8:53 a.m. ET


The Theranos laminitis  Elizabeth Holmes leaving the courthouse successful  San Jose past  week.
Credit...Brittany Hosea-Small/Reuters

The day-to-day events are mostly procedural, method and sometimes dull, my colleagues Erin Woo and Erin Griffith constitute successful a new nonfiction astir what it’s similar wrong the courtroom. (Apparently Holmes is casual to gully due to the fact that she seldom moves, a courtroom creator revealed successful the piece.)

I caught up with Woo and Griffith, who told maine what has struck them astir the proceedings truthful acold and what they’ll beryllium paying attraction to going forward.

The assemblage seems to beryllium the biggest menace to the lawsuit staying connected track.

The proceedings began with 17 jurors, including 5 alternates. But we’re little than halfway through, and lone 3 alternates remain.

In the archetypal week, a juror was dismissed aft learning that her leader would not compensate her for the clip away.

Then past week, a juror was sent location aft she said her Buddhist faith made her uncomfortable with the thought of punishing Holmes. Her replacement said she did not talk English well, though the justice did not let her to leave.

“I deliberation a fewer of america panicked that the full happening was astir to unravel past week,” Griffith told me. “It was hard capable to find 17 radical who had ne'er heard of Theranos oregon Elizabeth Holmes and could acceptable speech 3 months of their lives for this.”

The jurors besides person to beryllium protected from immoderate quality sum of the proceedings truthful they stay unbiased. The justice begins and ends each tribunal league by asking whether they person precocious heard astir Holmes oregon Theranos.

And there’s the pandemic to interest astir — a time of grounds was canceled aboriginal successful the proceedings due to the fact that a juror had a Covid-19 exposure.

If the fig of jurors drops beneath 12, determination could beryllium a mistrial, a large setback for prosecutors fixed that the proceedings has already been delayed repeatedly.

Much of what witnesses person been questioned astir hasn’t ever been casual to follow.

Words similar “immunoassays” and abbreviations similar H.C.G. (a hormone test) are often presented with nary explanation, Woo said.

“Something that I didn’t expect is however overmuch of the grounds deals with precise analyzable technological issues, and however small it feels those issues are spelled retired for the assemblage — who were selected astatine slightest successful portion due to the fact that of their unfamiliarity with Theranos and the biotech industry,” Woo told me. “I’m precise funny to spot what they get retired of this.”

The prosecution is presently presenting its case, aft which the defence volition begin. Holmes’s lawyers are expected to reason that she was manipulated by Sunny Balwani, her ex-partner and ex-boyfriend.

Holmes is connected the database of imaginable witnesses, though we don’t cognize if she’s going to testify.

Reporters don’t get a heads-up arsenic to who’s connected the docket for the day, and weren’t warned adjacent erstwhile erstwhile Defense Secretary James Mattis was called to the basal a fewer weeks ago.

“Every caller witnesser is simply a spot of a surprise. You perceive whispers and furious typing dispersed similar a question crossed the country arsenic the reporters relay the quality to their editors oregon Twitter,” Griffith told me. “The infinitesimal they called General Mattis was the closest happening to a melodramatic movie courtroom infinitesimal truthful far. I really fto retired a tiny gasp.”

For more:

  • Follow the proceedings connected Twitter with Erin Griffith and Erin Woo.

  • Average investors were not capable to get successful connected the past decade’s start-up boom. That erstwhile seemed unfair. Now it looks lucky.


Credit...Brent McDonald/The New York Times


Credit...Philip Cheung for The New York Times
  • A Hollywood success: Movie theaters are yet bouncing backmost from the pandemic, with coagulated turnout implicit the play for the latest James Bond spectacle.

  • Power outages: Pacific Gas & Electric began shutting disconnected powerfulness to astir 25,000 customers successful Central and Northern California connected Monday, and Southern California Edison warned it whitethorn bash the aforesaid amid accrued occurrence danger, The Associated Press reports.

  • Covid-19 shots: If you’ve had Covid-19, do you request a vaccine?

  • Latino voters: Jennifer Medina, a Times governmental newsman based successful Los Angeles, talks astir how she gets successful the caput of Latinos who voted for Trump.

  • Dottie Dodgion: One of the precise fewer high-profile pistillate drummers successful the male-dominated jazz satellite of the 1950s and ’60s, Dodgion died connected Sept. 17 successful Pacific Grove. She was 91.

  • Coronavirus decease toll: More than 70,000 radical person died of Covid-19 successful California arsenic of Monday, the astir deaths of immoderate state, The Associated Press reports.


  • A parallel universe: This Los Angeles creator makes large-scale, iridescent works that transport viewers into alien worlds.

  • Oil spill: Huntington Beach reopened connected Monday aft being closed for an offshore lipid spill. Officials accidental determination are nary detectable levels of oil-related toxins successful the water, The Associated Press reports.

  • Plane crash: A backstage craft crashed successful a residential San Diego suburb, sidesplitting astatine slightest 2 radical and damaging 10 homes, according to The Associated Press.

  • Opinion: What an L.A. City Council spot shows astir powerfulness and politics.

  • Conserving the Colorado River: Farmers successful the Palo Verde Irrigation District are being paid not to turn crops successful an effort to support much h2o successful Lake Mead, which has reached historically debased levels, The Los Angeles Times reports.


  • Weather warning: Polluted aerial is expected done Wednesday successful much of the Central Valley.

  • Dust storms: Strong winds and dry, escaped ungraded led to immense particulate storms that unopen down highways from the Sacramento Valley to the Mojave Desert, according to SFGate.


  • Magic mushrooms: Officials successful Arcata, a municipality successful Humboldt County, person decriminalized the usage of psychedelic plants, including mushrooms and ayahuasca, Lost Coast Outpost reports.

  • New fires: Multiple wind-driven blazes ignited connected Monday crossed Northern California, CBS13 reports.

Three $1.6 cardinal homes successful the state.

The Times has released its database of the 50 restaurants we’re astir excited astir this year. Seven are successful California.


Credit...Jason Henry for The New York Times

Today’s question extremity comes from Patricia Rasmussen, who recommends Salinas:

This summertime we decided to question by car from Southern California, up the seashore to Carmel and implicit to Salinas — John Steinbeck’s birthplace. We visited the location helium was calved successful and tried to spell to the depository that bears his sanction but it was closed. Salinas, similar galore tiny towns, struggled to support its Main Street live during the pandemic. Even connected a Monday, we were capable to bask the aged buildings and quaint pubs. The Steinbeck location is tally by volunteers who person refurbished the gathering and conscionable precocious reopened the doors to the public.

We took different abbreviated thrust to Monterey arsenic my hubby was anxious to spot Cannery Row, which isn’t successful the champion shape. The Monterey Bay Aquarium has reopened and reservations are a must.

Steinbeck and a coastal thrust made america retrieve wherefore we, autochthonal Californians, inactive emotion California.

Tell america astir your favourite places to sojourn successful California. Email your suggestions to CAtoday@nytimes.com. We’ll beryllium sharing much successful upcoming editions of the newsletter.

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