Wednesday, September 7, 2011
Dr. Conrad Murray, right, with his attorney J. Michael Flanagan, at a prior court hearing. Photo: Pool/REUTERS
In Sessions is reporting on their Facebook page that the California Court of Appeal has just denied a defense request to stay Conrad Murray's manslaughter trial. Murray is charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of pop icon Michael Jackson.
In pretrial motions the defense team had requested that for Murray to receive a fair trial, the jury should be sequestered (a la Casey Anthony jury) to protect it from the onslaught of media coverage. Judge Pastor had previously denied that motion and the defense appealed Pastor's ruling with the Appellate Court.
The trial starts tomorrow with the first phase of jury selection. From my understanding, the first questionnaire will deal with hardship issues to see if they can get a pool of jurors that can serve for the expected five weeks of trial. Once the hardship cases have been weeded out, the remaining jurors would be required to fill out a more extensive questionnaire.
I decided early on that I would not try to get a reserved seat at this trial because it would be difficult to get and the fact that the trial would have cameras in the courtroom. Instead, I chose to cover the Stephanie Lazarus trial (set to begin October 17th) where cameras, laptops, blackberries and smart phones have been banned from the courtroom. Hopefully, our guest writer "KZ" will be able to contribute a story or two on the Murray case once the trial kicks off with opening statements.
CNN Judge Denies Defense Jury Sequestration Motion