Potential juror: Jackson mayor trying to ‘clean up crime’

One man was let go after saying he would have a hard time following the judge’s orders. Another man was dismissed because he said he would struggle to convict Melton. The third was let go for health reasons.

Melton and Recio face civil rights violations in connection to a police-style raid on a Jackson duplex in August 2006. If convicted on all counts, they could face between five and 25 years in prison.

U.S. District Judge Dan Jordan along with the defense attorneys and federal prosecutors have been working since Monday to select a 12-member jury and three alternates.

The pace has been slow. Jordan had hoped to finish jury selection today. It is now planned to stretch through the end of the week, possibly into Monday.

About 50 of the 98 potential jurors have been dismissed this week, including Juror 61, from Madison, who was let go this morning.

The man said he thinks Melton and Recio were trying to fight crime during the night in question. He said he did not want to see either Melton or Recio serve prison time.

“If you asked me right now, I’d say, ‘Yeah they may have done it,’ but I don’t know if I could convict him,” he said.

Clarion Ledger
2/5/9