Last Updated: Wednesday, June 27, 2001, 11 a.m.
Fitzhugh jury questioning turns to media coverage
Potential jurors will be polled this afternoon
Potential jurors in the murder trial of Palo Altan Kenneth Fitzhugh
will be asked this afternoon about the amount and nature of media
coverage they have been exposed to in the year since Fitzhugh allegedly
killed his wife Kristine.
A total of about 160 potential jurors have been called so far,
with many being excused from serving by Judge Franklin Elia, for
a variety of reasons from vacation plans to caring for a disabled
Deputy District Attorney Michael Fletcher, and defense attorney
Thomas Nolan will continue the process of finding impartial and
unbiased jurors, those whose opinions haven't been already swayed
by the heavy media coverage of the murder.
When the trial begins, as soon as Monday, Fletcher will attempt
to convince the chosen men and women that Kenneth Fitzhugh, a husband
with no history of domestic violence, hit his wife over the head
and strangled her.
Fletcher is expected to claim Kenneth committed the murder because
Kristine was about to reveal to their eldest son Justin that his
biological father was another man, family friend Robert Brown. In
court documents, Fletcher wrote that DNA evidence has proven that
Brown is Justin's biological father.
Nolan is expected to argue that an intruder who entered the family's
unlocked basement committed the crime, and that a botched police
investigation captured the wrong man.
-- Bill D'Agostino and Elizabeth Lorenz