Yesterday, the jury in a Minneapolis federal courtroom decided they didn’t believe Thomas-Rasset’s claims of innocence and awarded the labels $1.92 million in damages, or $80,000 per song for 24 recordings. Investigators working for the recording industry claimed the 32-year-old mother residing in Brainerd, Minn., offered more than 1,700 songs to Kazaa users, but as often is the case in these matters, the plaintiffs whittled the list down to 24 recordings.

Thomas-Rasset’s first trial also resulted in a verdict favoring the recording industry when the jury awarded the labels $222,000, which works out to $9,250 per tune. However, in the days following the verdict, U.S. District Judge Michael Davis had second thoughts about his instructions to the jurors that the plaintiffs did not need to prove Thomas-Rasset was actually the person behind the I.P. address traced to the illicit peer-to-peer distribution.

There were questions as to who might have actually been using the computer. Was she the downloader? Was it her kids or her ex-husband? Furthermore, did anyone download songs from her shared directory, which was open to all Kazaa users?

While no one could prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that Thomas-Rasset was the person downloading copyrighted songs, the labels pointed out her longtime online screen name – “tereastarr” – was the name attached to the Kazaa account.

When it came to proving others downloaded songs from Thomas-Rasset’s computer, the only people identified as having done so were those who worked for MediaSentry, the company employed by the Recording Industry of America to investigate P2P file-sharing infringements.

In closing arguments, attorneys for both sides disputed what the evidence showed.

“Only Jammie Thomas’s computer was linked to illegal file-sharing on Kazaa. They couldn’t put a face behind the computer,” said defense attorney Joe Sibley.

However, Tim Reynolds, the attorney for the recording industry, said the “greater weight of evidence” showed Thomas-Rasset was the person responsible for the infringing behavior.

Plus, in his instructions to the jury, the judge did not explicitly define “distribution” but did say downloading unlicensed songs or making them available to other P2P users were violations of copyright law.

Aside from being the only file-sharing lawsuit to result in a verdict, let alone two verdicts, it was also one of the last P2P lawsuits pursued by the recording industry, which at one time totaled tens of thousands of cases. Unlike Thomas-Rasset, most people sued by the recording companies chose to settle their cases for a few thousand dollars rather than spend considerably more in legal fees defending their honor. The industry estimates fewer than 10 people are currently fighting infringement lawsuits.

And Thomas-Rasset may still have an opportunity to settle the case rather than live with a $1.92 million judgment against her. An RIAA spokesperson says the recording industry is still open to settlement. Meanwhile, Thomas-Rasset’s attorneys haven’t said whether their client will go that route. But if you had a choice between paying a few thousand dollars or paying almost $2 million, what would you do?

As to paying the fine awarded to the labels, Thomas-Rasset wasn’t exactly optimistic about the labels receiving the money.

“There’s no way they’re ever going to get that,” she said. “I’m a mom, limited means, so I’m not going to worry about it now.”

Maybe so. But you can bet she’s going to worry tomorrow.