Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Jackson doc's defense wants jury sequestered

LOS ANGELES (AP) — In a sign of legal fallout from the Casey Anthony murder trial, a lawyer for Michael Jackson's doctor said Wednesday his jury should be sequestered to avoid contamination by TV pundits — specifically Nancy Grace.

Attorney J. Michael Flanagan said the televised, involuntary manslaughter trial of Dr. Conrad Murray could be prejudiced by "final arguments" being delivered daily on TV by Grace and other commentators.

When Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Michael Pastor asked if Flanagan would want jurors sequestered around the clock during the trial, the lawyer responded, "Every time Nancy Grace is on TV."

The judge said he would be instructing jurors not to pay attention to publicity about the trial and the trial will begin on Sept. 8 with prospective jurors being given questionnaires. Opening statements are expected in late September

Meanwhile, Pastor agreed to travel across town to Sony Pictures Studios to view 16 hours of raw footage from Jackson's rehearsal movie "This Is It," which lawyers want to use as evidence.

Prosecutors and defense attorneys spent two weeks examining more than 100 hours of video and have submitted requests for excerpts. The prosecution wants 12 hours; the defense seeks four hours of video.

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