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Jury selection continues in trial for CMPD officer

So far, attorneys have spent several hours interviewing dozens of potential jurors.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Jury selection continued Tuesday for the trial of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department officer Phillip Barker.

Barker is accused of hitting and killing James Short in 2017, while on his way to a call.

Inside the Mecklenburg County Courthouse, attorneys continued to narrow down a jury pool for the case against Barker.

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In general, a jury selection could go quickly or could take some time.

“Jury selection can take a day, to two and three weeks depending on the nature of the case," Charlotte Attorney Gary Mauney said.

Mauney is not an attorney in this case but says both sides usually look for two main factors. First, if a potential juror can be impartial, and second, they have no physical or mental health concerns.

“Looking for jurors who can be fair, that haven’t made up their mind before they even walk into the jury room or courtroom, and then where they’re healthy enough to sit through perhaps a multi-week trial," Mauney said.

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So far, attorneys have spent several hours interviewing dozens of potential jurors, asking them all kinds of questions, like encounters with police officers and thoughts on alcohol abuse. 

“Of course, as an attorney you’re an advocate, you’re looking for an advantage for your client," Mauney said. 

Attorneys can strike off a potential juror for any reason. Mauney says since this is a high-profile case, we're likely still far away from seating a jury, and to be patient with the process as it plays out.

Experts say this trial could last a couple of weeks. Jury selection will move into its third day on Wednesday at 9:30 a.m.

Contact Lexi Wilson at lwilson@wcnc.com and follow her on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

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