The Clarion-Ledger, 3/11/9

The attorney for Mayor Frank Melton has asked U.S. District Judge Dan Jordan to reconsider plans to draw the mayor’s next jury entirely from the six coastal counties.

In a filing today, John Reeves, Melton’s attorney, said the relative paucity of potential African-American jurors in the coastal counties is “highly prejudicial” and does not allow Melton a fair opportunity to be judged by a jury of his peers.

Melton and his former bodyguard Michael Recio are scheduled to stand trial May 11 on federal civil rights charges related to an August 2006 warrantless raid on a Virden Addition duplex Melton later said was a “crack house.”

This the second federal trial related to the raid. The first trial ended last month in a mistrial after the jury was unable to reach a verdict.