After a three-day hiatus, jury selection resumes Monday morning in the trial of Roger Clemens, the former star pitcher accused of lying to Congress about taking performance-enhancing drugs.
Before we start exploring the nitty-gritty of today’s crop of potential jurors, I thought I would point out a story that ran Sunday about the selection process.
Among my favorite moments so far, all reported in that story, were the response of Roger Clemens’ attorney to a potential juror who said she was a Redskins fan; a juror who said baseball players all spit and scratch themselves; and another who disclosed only going to Nationals Park to catch the opera.
Oh, and federal prosecutors have asked many potential panelists to rate their sporting zeal on a scale of one to 10.
The box score so far: The judge has selected 18 potential jurors to sit on a final pool of 36 people eligible to sit in judgment of Clemens. Prosecutors and defense lawyers will then winnow that pool down to the final12. (There will also be four alternates.)
U.S. District Judge Reggie B. Walton started on Wednesday with a group of 50 eligible D.C. residents. If he strikes more than three other potential jurors from that bunch, he must call in another 50 D.C. residents and read them all an 82-item questionnaire. That is a time-consuming process to say the least, and he is hoping to avoid having to do that. Still, Walton hopes to have jury selection wrapped up by Tuesday afternoon.
The trial is expected to last at least a month. Clemens is accused of committing perjury, obstructing Congress and making false statements when he testified before a House committee that he never took steroids or Human Growth Hormone.