No Easy Answers

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Libby Probing Pre-trial Publicity in Jury Selection [Doc 246]

Converted via OCR, then hand edited into html.

The referenced attachment of samples is about 140 pages in length. I haven't digested the contents for purposes of preparing a summary, but this defense action is essential to support the argument that Libby did not obtain an impartial jury. Building that case will take time.

Well, after digesting the 140 pages, some of which is repetitive (the July 14, 2006 National Press Club transcript appears twice), most of the "bulk" of the material represents television programming, not print media. But these are 12 discrete pieces of media presentation that are "of interest" to the defense. Note too, the defense refers to this list as a "sample," not an exhaustive list.

Case 1:05-cr-00394-RBW Document 246 Filed 01/16/2007 Page 1 of 2


As previously noted by the defense, the pretrial publicity in this case has been significant and in many cases has included inaccurate and inflammatory statements and assertions that are unduly prejudicial to Mr. Libby. Therefore, in connection with the voir dire, the defense will need to ask certain venire members about their exposure to such publicity and probe whether that exposure has affected their ability to impartially judge the facts in this case. Such individualized voir dire is necessary to give the Court an adequate basis for determining whether the venire member will be able to render a verdict based on the evidence adduced at trial, and not incomplete facts and speculation circulating before trial. See United States v. Liddy, 509 F.2d 428, 434-35 (D.C.Cir. 1974). Attached to this pleading are a sample of instances of publicity about which the defense may want to question jurors.

Dated: January 16, 2007


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