Romanian man appears eager to be juror; Kelly nods

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A 68-year-old man gave almost too-perfect answers during voir dire (jury questioning) this morning in the R. Kelly case.

The man, who immigrated to the U.S. from Romania 38 years ago, appeared totally devoid of biases or preconceived ideas. "I will go by the facts of the case, not by what someone alleges," he said. "The scoresheet begins at the beginning of the trial, zero-zero."

"The U.S. is a unique country. Everyone who comes here is innocent until proven guilty," he said. "Everybody has to prove their case... When I go to bed, I want a clear conscience. I will do what is best and fair."

The man must have appeared especially perfect to the defense when he said that if he was only 95 percent sure of Kelly's guilt, he woud "need more information."

And if Kelly does not testify, the man said, "that's because the prosecutors didn't prove their case."

Though he professed not to know much about the case, the man knew the charges were brought against Kelly six years ago. "He's not guilty in my mind if he's accused," he said.

Kelly often nodded as if in agreement to the potential juror's answers — especially when the man said, "In this case, I have pride, I don't have ego."

At the end of his questioning, the man promised not to tell even his wife about the case. If he told her, he said, she would tell her half-sister, who would tell everybody. The entire room — Kelly included — broke up in laughter.

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R. Kelly on trial

The story of the allegations against R. Kelly started here in the Sun-Times. Almost six years later, it's now finally reached a trial.

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This page contains a single entry by Eric Herman published on May 15, 2008 10:12 AM.

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