The Athletic Reporter
September 12, 2005 Sports News the Way You Want It. Completely Made Up. Issue 127
 
Eagle County D.A. To Load Jury With Celtics Fans
Originally posted 10/27/2003

Mark Hurlbert, left, and one of his prospective jurors
EAGLE, CO - Eagle County, Colorado District Attorney Mark Hurlbert, who will likely lead the prosecution of Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant now that the athlete's rape case has been bound over to trial, detailed for reporters this week a plan to load the jury with Boston Celtics fans.

"Though the two teams have not met in the NBA Finals since 1987," Hurlbert said, "the rivalry between the two teams is a long and bitter one. The evidence against Mr. Bryant in this case is compelling, but I would absolutely feel even better if the jury was made up of Celtics fans."

Bryant attorney Pamela Mackey told reporters that she would move for a mistrial should Hurlbert's jury strategy succeed. "My client would not stand a chance of a fair trial with the type of jury that Mr. Hurlbert has suggested. Any Celtics fan old enough to serve on a jury would be old enough to have at least a passing familiarity with the intensity and rancor associated with this long-standing rivalry. We will fight this will every resource at our disposal."

Judge Frederick Gannett, who has presided over the Bryant case to this point, said that during jury selection Hurlbert will be allowed the standard number of peremptory challenges and may use them any way he wishes.

"I'm not technically supposed to be saying stuff like this," Hurlbert said, "but, if you get that jury notice, and you're a Celtics fan, don't make any plans for, say, early next spring."

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