Monday, February 2, 2015

Desperately Seeking Jurors

There's a case of "I told you so" unfolding in Courtroom 9 of the federal courthouse in Boston.

U.S. District Court Judge George A. O'Toole Jr. is presiding over what has been an unusually slow, tedious process: selecting the jury that will hear the case against the accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.

It has proven much harder than O'Toole envisioned, with so many prospective jurors expressing bias against the defendant, and that has emboldened Tsarnaev's lawyers to tell the judge they told him so — even as they make repeated requests to move the trial to ensure they can raise the venue issue on appeal should Tsarnaev be convicted.

Many prospective jurors have proved unsuitable because they say they have formed unshakable opinions that Tsarnaev is guilty, thanks to the avalanche of publicity since the April 15, 2013, bombings that killed three people, tore the limbs of 17 others, and injured more than 200 more.


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