Anne Arundel County executive John Leopold has waived his right to jury trial.
A second pool of prospective jurors had already assembled Thursday morning in Circuit Court in Annapolis. Another pool of about 100 possible jurors endured a seven-hour marathon of waiting and questioning Wednesday. But in the end, the defense felt they would get a fairer hearing from Judge Dennis Sweeney.
Leopold, 69, faces four charges of misconduct in office and one count of fraudulently misappropriating funds for allegedly using his security detail for personal and political purposes. If convicted, the second-term Republican could face up to five years in prison.
Opening arguments begin Friday morning.