The Latest: Jury has been selected in Will Smith case

AP News
|
Posted: Dec 05, 2016 11:27 PM
The Latest: Jury has been selected in Will Smith case

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The Latest on the Will Smith shooting-death trial (all times local):

10 p.m.

A jury has been selected in the case of the man charged with second-degree murder in the shooting death of retired New Orleans Saints star Will Smith.

The 12-member jury, with four alternates, was completed late Monday night. Opening arguments are expected Tuesday.

Smith died after being shot eight times the night of April 9. Smith's SUV had been rear-ended by a Hummer that was driven by Cardell Hayes.

Jurors likely will be faced with conflicting testimony over which of the two drivers was the aggressor in the confrontation that followed.

___

5 p.m.

Jury selection is still ongoing but strategies from both the prosecution and defense are already becoming evident in the trial stemming from former New Orleans Saints star Will Smith's death.

Details of Louisiana's "stand your ground" law were discussed as potential jurors were questioned Monday.

Defendant Cardell Hayes is charged with second-degree murder for shooting Smith in a confrontation following an April traffic crash. Hayes' lawyer is stressing that the law allows a person to "meet force with force," rather than retreat from situations in which he might suffer harm.

But prosecutor Laura Rodrigue said that law applies to people who are engaged in lawful activity.

Prosecutors have maintained that Hayes willfully crashed his vehicle into Smith's prior to the shooting

11:30 a.m.

Attorneys in the Will Smith shooting-death case are gauging potential jurors' attitudes on when it's appropriate to flee an aggressor and when it's appropriate to use lethal self-defense under Louisiana's "stand your ground" law.

A judge, prosecutors and attorneys for defendant Cardell Hayes are working to cull a pool of well over 100 jurors to 12. Hayes is charged with second-degree murder.

Hayes' defense team has cast Smith as the aggressor in the confrontation that followed an April 9 car crash. An attorney for Smith's family has said Hayes fired in a rage after the crash. Lawyers began questioning potential jurors Monday morning.

So many potential jurors filled the courtroom that there was no room for the public or news media. Journalists were allowed to listen in from a separate courtroom.

9:45 a.m.

About 130 potential jury candidates have begun filing into a New Orleans courtroom for the Will Smith shooting-death trial.

The candidates arrived about 9:30 a.m. Monday. Jury selection is expected to be completed by Tuesday afternoon.

The courtroom was too crowded for journalists to be allowed inside. Outside, a handful of protesters brandished signs that read, "Free Cardell Hayes."

Hayes was wearing a dark suit Monday; he previously had appeared in court dressed in prison orange.

The 29-year-old Hayes has pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder in Smith's death, and attempted second-degree murder in the wounding of Smith's wife. Smith was a retired New Orleans Saints player who played on the 2009 team that won the Super Bowl.

Smith died after being shot eight times the night of April 9.

__

7:10 a.m.

Questioning of potential jurors is set to begin in the trial of a man charged with fatally shooting former New Orleans Saints star Will Smith earlier this year.

Twenty-nine-year-old Cardell Hayes has pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder in Smith's death, and attempted second-degree murder in the wounding of Smith's wife.

Monday's trial opens with jury selection in New Orleans.

Smith died after being shot eight times the night of April 9.

Smith's SUV had been rear-ended by a Hummer that was driven by Hayes. Jurors likely will be faced with conflicting testimony over which of the two drivers was the aggressor in the confrontation that followed.