The Clarion-Ledger Editorial, 8/8/8

Prosecutors, naturally, want to choose jurors predisposed toward convictions, just as defense attorneys want the opposite, but a federal prosecutor’s request to close the jury selection process in the Frank Melton trial is a bad idea, a very bad idea.

U.S. Justice Department prosecutor Mark Blumberg filed a motion Wednesday asking U.S. District Court Judge Daniel Jordan to approve closing some of the jury selection to the public. Blumberg asked Jordan to allow jurors to be interviewed individually in the judge’s chambers because of “the sensitive nature of the topics which must be explored in this case.”

Melton and former bodyguards Marcus Wright and Michael Recio are charged with civil rights and weapons violation charges, arising from the sledgehammer demolishing of a Ridgeway Street duplex in 2006. Their trial has been set for Nov. 12.