Jury Deadlocked On Top Charge In NY Theft Of Kirsten Dunst's Bag

Saturday, Oct 3, 2009  |  Updated 1:15 AM CDT
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Jury Deadlocked on Top Charge for Alleged Kirsten Dunst Bag Thief

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A jury deadlocked Friday on the most serious charge against a mechanic who said he was misled into taking part in the theft of Kirsten Dunst's $2,000 handbag during a Manhattan movie shoot.

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A jury deadlocked Friday on the most serious charge against a mechanic who said he was misled into taking part in the theft of Kirsten Dunst's $2,000 handbag during a Manhattan movie shoot.

James Jimenez was convicted of a misdemeanor count of criminal trespass. But jurors deadlocked on burglary and other charges in the case, which included testimony from the "Spider-Man" star and her one-time co-star Simon Pegg.

It wasn't immediately clear whether the 35-year-old would be retried on the burglary charge in the August 2007 theft. It came while the 2008 comedy "How to Lose Friends&Alienate People" was being filmed at the SoHo Grand Hotel.

For now, he remains free on $50,000 bail at least until his Nov. 13 sentencing date on the criminal trespass count. It could send Jimenez, 35, to jail for up to a year. A burglary conviction carries as much as 15 years in prison.

"I feel pretty good," he said as he left court holding a Bible. "I never gave up my faith in the Lord."

There was no immediate response from representatives for Dunst and Pegg, whose cell phone and other items also were taken.

Jimenez told jurors he thought he was helping run an errand for co-defendant Jarrod Beinerman's mother when the two men slipped into a penthouse suite at the hotel around 4 a.m. on Aug. 9, while the movie was being filmed downstairs. Dunst and Pegg had left some belongings in the suite, which they had used to relax between takes.

Dunst told the jury last week that she returned to find her $2,000 Balenciaga bag missing, along with the $2,000 inside. Pegg testified that his phone, camera and iPod also disappeared.

Some of the items, including Dunst's purse, eventually were returned.

Jimenez testified that Beinerman took the items. Jimenez carried them out of the hotel in a shopping bag but said he didn't realize what was in it.

Beinerman was sentenced last September to 4 1/2 years in prison after pleading guilty to attempted burglary.
 

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