LOCK HAVEN - "Not guilty."
The words, loud and clear, were repeated four times by the jury foreman in the large courtroom Tuesday afternoon.
The elation from former Clinton County Commissioner Adam Coleman and his attorney Robert Englert also was loud and clear.
A smiling Coleman shook hand with his attorney and then immediately turned his head and looked into the benches where his mother, Kim, sat. She smiled, too. And then Coleman called his dad, Dave, on his cellphone and relayed the verdict to him. Another big smile erupted.
For Adam Coleman, it finally was time to smile, after months of rumors and accusations, and eventually criminal charges that the 32-year-old was an accomplice with former Lock Haven YMCA Director Jeremiah Clark to steal money from the YMCA and Elks.
The jury didn't see it that way, pronouncing him not guilty on all four counts - three charges of theft and one of conspiracy.
"I'm very happy ... very overwhelmed ... the jury of my peers came back with not guilty on all charges ... and that shows I did nothing wrong," Coleman said.
"The jury was willing to sit and listen to the lack of evidence from the attorney general and the evidence presented by my attorney Robert Englert ... I'm very happy today. The jury saw it for what it was ... that I didn't do anything.
"I'm glad it's over. This has consumed my whole life," Coleman said. "I'm ready to move on with my life."
The charges, filed just one month before last year's general election, changed his life dramatically.
The one-term county commissioner was the top vote-getter in the 2011 May primary election and was last in the polls in November when the three county commissioners were elected.
"It obviously had a lot to do with it," Coleman said of the devastating loss that turned away his bid for a second term as one of the county's top officials. Will he ever return to politics?
"I don't know. I'll have to give it a lot of thought. I do know that I never want to put my family and friends through something like this again," he said.
Still, Coleman didn't appear bitter. Instead, he said he was saddened by what had happened to the two local organizations.
"I obviously feel a great deal of remorse for what has happened to the YMCA and Elks. The Y is a great organization for this community. And the Elks is very near and dear to my heart ... I am a past exalted ruler, so is my grandfather.
"It's a shame they were robbed of that money. Two great organizations were wronged by what has transpired," he continued.
Asked if he planned to celebrate, Englert responded for his client. "He'll be celebrating, I'm on to the next one."
Englert smiled as he watched Coleman talking to the media outside the courthouse, obviously very satisfied with the verdict.
"Adam's been through quite a bit ... in the press and in the courtroom. I hope the public takes this finding of not guilty to know that he didn't do anything wrong and those who believed in him will know that he didn't let them down.
"I'm sympathetic to everyone who was taken advantage of by Jerry Clark. Jerry Clark was a bad apple who tried to take Adam down with him. But the jury would not let him do that.
"Everything that Jerry Clark had a connection with was tainted. I'm glad the jury did not make Adam another victim of Clark's deception," Englert said.
"When they considered all the facts and all the evidence, they arrived at the right decision," he continued.
In response to comments about the large number of documents presented by the prosecution, Englert said, "If it was just about paper we would not need jurors."
As he walked down the street, cellphone in hand a, Coleman had a much different appearance than earlier in the day. He was more relaxed .
"It's back to work tomorrow," he said matter-of-factly. "I'm actually enjoying working outside with my dad again."