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Chinese woman found not guilty of trespassing, guilty of resisting arrest for Mar-a-Lago incident

Lu Jing
Posted at 8:08 AM, Feb 12, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-14 07:52:50-05

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A Chinese woman was found not guilty of trespassing on Wednesday, but guilty of resisting arrest, for a security incident at President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago club back in December.

Lu Jing, 56, faces a maximum sentence of one year in prison for the resisting arrest conviction. She will be sentenced this Friday, Feb. 14.

A jury of four women and three men deliberated for roughly 90 minutes on Wednesday.


VERDICT: Chinese woman found guilty of resisting arrest, not guilty of trespassing at Mar-a-Lago

According to her arrest report, Jing was spotted taking photographs on Mar-a-Lago property around 12:45 p.m. on Dec. 18.

The security manager at Mar-a-Lago said Jing tried to enter through the main gate, but was stopped by security and told she had to leave. She then walked about 100 feet away and entered the property through a service driveway, getting approximately 100 yards inside the perimeter, police said.

Jing testified in her own defense on Tuesday, saying a tour guide dropped her off at Mar-a-Lago, but didn't stay with her because you're not allowed to leave your vehicle there.

Jing claimed she didn’t see any signs that made her think she couldn’t take pictures or walk onto the property. Jing added she didn't remember being approached by security.

“She walked up and was fascinated by the beauty of the Mar A Lago property,” said public defender Schnelle Tonge in court.

During opening statements on Tuesday, prosecutors said Jing understood when security asked her to leave. However, Jing's defense team said she didn't understand and made an honest mistake.

When security tried to make contact with Jing at Mar-a-Lago, she fled the property but was tracked down a short distance away, police said.

According to her arrest report, "[Jing] balled up her hands into fists, crossed her arms on her chest, began screaming 'No, no no!' and began pulling away from me," when officers tried to detain her.

A Mar-a-Lago security guard, Murray Fulton testified that Jing didn’t understand English so he used hand gestures for her to leave.

“I had to use hand signals,” Sgt. Michael Dawson testified.

On Tuesday, Sgt. Michael Dawson with the Palm Beach Police Department took the stand and demonstrated how Jing crossed her arms to resist being arrested.

Sgt. Dawson and Officer Taylor Molinaro told the court Jing crossed her arms as they tried to arrest her.

Jing is the second Chinese national arrested at Mar-a-Lago in less than a year. WPTV broke the story last April of Yujing Zhang's arrest. Zhang was found guilty of trespassing at Mar-a-Lago and lying to the Secret Service.

A federal judge sentenced Zhang to eight months in prison. She's being held by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement at the Glades County Detention Center and is awaiting deportation.

She will be sentenced on Friday.