Jury selection continues in Chatt. for Thomas trial

Jury selection continues in Chatt. for Thomas trial

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George Thomas George Thomas

By HANA KIM
6 News Reporter

CHATTANOOGA (WATE) -- Jury selection continues Tuesday in Chattanooga for George Thomas, the third defendant to stand trial in the Christian-Newsom murders.

This is  more of the individual questioning stage of jury selection. Those who make the cut will return for group questioning on Wednesday.

Fifty-five people are in jury pool from the past two days. More than 100 people have been questioned.

The court hopes to have a jury seated by Wednesday evening. The jurors will be sequestered.

Judge Richard Baumgartner told the jury pool the trial will last about 10 days. It begins on December 1.

A woman whose son was murdered 15 years ago was cut from the jury pool after she told attorneys she couldn't agree to impose the death penalty, which the state is seeking in this case. However, she felt her son's killer deserves more jail time for his manslaughter conviction.

Judge Baumgartner cut a woman from the pool who was very emotional when asked to consider the death penalty. Prosecutor Takisha Fitzgerald gave her water and a tissue.

Another woman who was also dismissed cried and said she was against the death penalty. As she walked out, she said, "God bless you" to Thomas.

Several people were cut from the jury pool Tuesday afternoon because they knew too much about the case.

The judge stopped the questioning of one potential juror Tuesday evening and dismissed the man because the judge accidentally mentioned evidence that the victims were raped.

The judge said that after the man talked about how he had zero tolerance for anyone who raped others.

Thomas spoke little to his attorneys during the questioning and had no noticeable reactions.


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