Kernell could face a difficult trial, which is expected to last for several more days. Besides the fact that his father, Mike Kernell, is a lifelong Democrat, what also hurts Kernell's case is that he lives in "Palin Country," where the former Alaska governor is hugely popular.
"The defense is in a position where I don't think they can beat up on her too much. People are crazy about her here," Knoxville News Sentinel writer Jamie Satterfield said.
The former governor's attorneys said the hacking and subsequent posting of personal information online was extremely disruptive.
"This was an invasion of privacy," attorney Thomas V. Van Flein said. "It was a disruption for the campaign and it was actually disruptive to her ability to communicate with her staff in Alaska."
In her memoir, "Going Rogue," Palin described Kernell as a creep who was bent on ruining her campaign.
"I was horrified to realize that millions of people could read my personal messages," she wrote. "All kinds of sensitive discussions, including political ones, the kind of unguarded talk you only have with the people who are closest to you and don't take what you say out of context."
ABC News' Huma Khan and The Associated Press contributed to this report.