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The potential jury
About 75 potential jurors were asked by Judge Barry G. Williams if they were unaware of the high-profile case. None raised their hands. All potential jurors also indicated they were familiar with the $6.4 million civil settlement the city paid to Gray's family, as well as the curfew enacted amid April's unrest.
Porter is black; more than half of the first group of potential jurors were black.
The process offered a glimpse into the upcoming proceedings. Williams read a list of more than 200 potential witnesses. He also told jurors that the trial would not go past Dec. 17.
Williams emphasized the idea of civic duty throughout, calling jury duty "an honor" critical for "our society to flourish."
While Williams spent Monday morning questioning potential jurors as a group, he spent the afternoon questioning them individually on their responses to the questions, a process that could take days.
Elsewhere in the courthouse
Elsewhere in the courthouse, other cases proceeded with less fanfare. The fact that Porter's trial began as scheduled with jury selection makes it something of a rarity in Baltimore: In many cases trials are postponed multiple times. Even those that go forward on the day they are scheduled often begin first with the judge hearing motions in the case, a phase that was handled in Porter's case through a series of pre-trial motions hearings held in recent weeks.
On Monday, one case after another was postponed in Judge Emanuel Brown's courtroom. The trial of two men, Marcus Johnson and Marshon Floyd, was postponed because the prosecutor in the case wasn't available. Johnson and Floyd have been incarcerated since October 2014 on assault charges, and their attorneys complained that the case had already been postponed "numerous times."
"This case is getting very old," one of the defense attorneys said.
Another case was postponed because the defendant had not been transferred from a corrections facility in Hagerstown as he should have been, attorneys said.
The judge asked potential jurors a series of questions, and requested that they stand and give their juror number of they had a response or question.
Among the questions:
Would you give "more or less weight" to testimony from an officer simply because they are an officer? Seven jurors stood.
Are you or an immediate family member law enforcement? 12 stood.
Have you or your immediate family been the victim of crime, been arrested/charged/convicted, or facing pending charges? 38 stood.
Do you have strong feelings about the charges Porter faces? 26 stood.
Do you have "strong feelings" about Freddie Gray or Porter being African American? 1 stood.
Do you have strong feelings about the race, sex, religion, etc., of the defendant, witnesses, etc.? 1 stood.
Do you believe you can not serve on jury because of medical issues? 10 stood.
Do you believe you can not serve on jury for another reason? 29 stood.
One juror, No. 223, indicated he knew both Marilyn Mosby and Det. Syreeta Teel, the lead detective in the department's internal investigation into Gray's death.
As the morning turned into afternoon, Williams was individually questioning potential jurors on their responses to the questions.