AP Explains: Two jurors dismissed from Trump hush money trial

(18 Apr 2024)

New York – 18 April 2024
1. Wide of Donald Trump entering vehicle to go to courthouse

New York – 18 April 2024
2. VARIOUS STILLS of Donald Trump in the courtroom

New York – 18 April 2024
3. SOUNDBITE (English) Mike Sisak, The Associated Press
"It has been a tumultuous third day of jury selection in Donald Trump’s hush money criminal trial. The day began with seven seated jurors, but now there are just five. Two jurors were dismissed after being seated and sworn in. The first, a nurse from Manhattan who said that she feared she could not be impartial or fair, could not keep the outside influences out of her judgment of the case. After people started reaching out and asking if she was on the jury, she was concerned about identifying information about her making its way to the media and being able to identify her. Jurors in this case are anonymous for the most part. The parties have the names. Donald Trump has the names, but the rest of the world does not know who these people are. Then later in the day, a second juror was dismissed. This man, an IT professional, had said during questioning that he found Donald Trump mysterious and fascinating. But prosecutors raised questions about whether he had honestly answered a question about, having in the past been accused or convicted of a crime. Prosecutors said they found a news article about a man with the same name who had been arrested in the 1990s for tearing down political posters in the New York City suburbs. After a conference in court where the man was was brought back to the courthouse to answer questions, he was dismissed from the jury as well. Adding to that, more drama in the courtroom, prosecutors are again seeking to hold Donald Trump in contempt of court. They have cited seven social media posts that he has made since the court began on Monday, that they want to add to a hearing next week where they seek to have Donald Trump fined at least $3,000 and possibly face additional sanctions. Also, the judge, in light of what has happened to these two jurors and identifying information possibly getting out into the public, he has ordered the media to stop reporting the specific names of potential jurors, employers and previous employers. And since he made that order, people who have been interviewed for the jury pool, in the jury box, potential jurors, they have been talking about their employment in more generic terms, working in finance, in banking, as a lawyer, but not identifying which law firm or which bank."
4. Wide of dismissed juror speaking with news media outside courthouse

New York – 18 April 2024
5. STILL of Donald Trump in court during jury selection
6. Wide of Donald Trump leaving courtroom

Two jurors in former President Donald Trump’s hush money trial were dismissed Thursday, one after expressing doubt about her ability to be fair and impartial and the other over concerns that some of his answers in court may not have been accurate.

The dismissals reduce to five the number of jurors who have been seated for the first-ever criminal trial of a former president.

The setbacks in the selection process emerged during a frenetic morning in which prosecutors also asked for Trump to be held in contempt over a series of social media posts this week, while the judge in the case barred reporters from identifying jurors’ employers after expressing privacy concerns.


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