Attorneys in the trial of George Zimmerman for the murder of Trayvon Martin struggled to put together a jury on Tuesday, as it was hard to find people who hadn't heard something about the case.I suppose it is. How hard?
One juror told attorneys they could only hope they find residents who could keep an open mind.
"I haven't lived under a rock for the past year," juror B-51, a white, female retiree, said. "It's pretty hard for people not to have gotten some information."
By the end of Tuesday, the attorneys had questioned 14 potential jurors in person, and more than 40 jury candidates had been dismissed after filling out a questionnaire.One mustn't lose hope, though, for we have potential in the jury pool:
Only four candidates from a pool of hundreds were questioned in court on Monday.
Court officials in Sanford have summoned 500 residents of Seminole County to appear before the judge, prosecution and defence and will choose a panel of six, with four alternates. In Florida, 12 jurors are required only for criminal trials involving cases when the death penalty is being considered. Zimmerman is charged with second degree murder, for the shooting of the unarmed black teenager in February 2012. He has pleaded not guilty.
A woman interviewed when court resumed on Tuesday, juror B37, told prosecutor Bernie de la Rionda that she had not read into the case in the newspapers because, she said: "I just don't think [newspapers are] truthful. They're a lot better use in the parrot cage." The married woman, a volunteer at an animal shelter who said she looked after "one parrot, one crow with one wing, three dogs, four cats, and a couple of lizards", added that she was sure that there had been riots in Sanford over the case. Last year's protests in the central Florida city passed off without incident and there were no arrests.Before too long, it might be time to summon the lizards.