Judge In KDND Trial Bars Jurors From The Net
September 14, 2009 at 4:37 AM (PT)
SAN DIEGO lawyer HARVEY LEVINE, who is representing one of JENNIFER STRANGE's children, wants to stop jurors from using the Internet -- and seraching for things like "JENNIFER STRANGE" or "Hold Your Wee For A Wii" during the high-profile trial over the death of STRANGE during a contest held by ENTERCOM Top 40 KDND (THE END)/SACRAMENTO in 2007.
Jury selection is set to begin this week.
THE SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE reports that "in the latest sign of the collision between the courts and new communication technologies, jurors will have to sign declarations attesting that they will not use 'personal electronic and media devices' to research or communicate about any aspect of the case. That includes computers, cell phones and laptops. Jurors will have to sign the declarations, made under penalty of perjury, both before and after they serve."
It is believed this is the first time in CALIFORNIA that such a ruling has been made.
"It's a huge problem," said SAN DIEGO criminal defense lawyer CHRISTOPHER PLOURD to the TIMES-UNION. He was recently involved in a case in which a juror, during deliberations, searched GOOGLE with the term "attempted murder."
SACRAMENTO Superior Court JUDGE LLOYD PHILLIPS imposed a gag order on both sides, so LEVINE was not interviewed by the paper. But in court papers, he said a GOOGLE search of "JENNIFER STRANGE water intoxication" yielded 63,700 hits. A YAHOO search found 63,500 Web sites, blogs and legal analyses.