Judge In Bever Case Wants Jury Chosen Wednesday


Wednesday, April 18th 2018, 1:38 pm
By: News On 6


Jury selection continues in the trial of a Broken Arrow teenager accused of murdering five members of his family and severely injuring another.

Tuesday, defense attorneys and prosecutors questioned potential jurors for the trial of Michael Bever. The judge said she wants a jury chosen tonight so opening statements can begin Thursday.

4/17/2018 Related Story: Michael Bever Murder Trial, Jury Selection Continues

The case has been in the news a lot since 2015 when Michael and his brother, Robert Bever, were charged with stabbing their parents and three siblings to death. But, despite that, three potential jurors said they had never heard of the case.

Those who had heard about it had to promise to be fair despite what they have heard.

Two other potential jurors said they weren’t aware they would have to decide the punishment if they find Bever guilty.

The district attorney explained that if they were to find Bever guilty, they would also have to choose the punishment as well.

Several of the jurors wrote on their questionnaire that if a person was found guilty of first-degree murder, the only punishment they could consider would be life without parole, but, attorneys reminded them the law would require them to consider all punishments, which, in this case, would be life or life without parole.

The death penalty is not an option in this case.

The attorneys asked potential jurors questions about homeschooling, whether young people should be held accountable for their actions.

They also asked about bullying and if anyone had ever tried to impress a bully and if people that are homeschooled are behind the curve.

Prosecutors brought up the movie Oceans 11, where several people planned a casino heist, and asked if all people should be held equally responsible for a crime, even if they had different jobs.

The point of the questions, which can get personal, is to find 12 people who can decide the case only on the evidence and be fair to both sides.

The judge warned jurors that it's not like television, where someone can ask for the court reporter to read back part of someone's testimony. The jury also won't get a transcript when they go back to the jury room to deliberate. She said that's why it's important to have jurors who will listen, pay attention and taken notes.

If the jury is selected Wednesday, witnesses could begin testimony Thursday.

3 jurors said they’ve never heard one word about this case, until they walked into the courtroom.@newson6

— Lori Fullbright (@LoriFullbright) April 18, 2018

2 jurors said they never realized they would have to decide punishment. They thought they only decided guilt or innocence &someone else, a judge or another jury would decide punishment.

— Lori Fullbright (@LoriFullbright) April 18, 2018

Jury selection is like a civics lesson, reminding jurors of constitutional rights like, all people charged w/crimeare presumed innocent.

— Lori Fullbright (@LoriFullbright) April 18, 2018

And, the DA must prove all elements of a crime beyond a reasonable doubt before a jury can find someone guilty.

— Lori Fullbright (@LoriFullbright) April 18, 2018

The person on trial and their lawyers don’t have to do or say one thing to prove the suspect’s innocence. The burden of proof is all on the DA’s office.

— Lori Fullbright (@LoriFullbright) April 18, 2018

Also, jurors must promise not to decide the case on anything except the evidence they hear in court, not what is on the news or social media or what their friends or family say.

— Lori Fullbright (@LoriFullbright) April 18, 2018

On the questionnaire, several jurors said the only punishment they could consider if someone is found guilty of murder, is life w/our parole but law says they must consider both options, life and life w/out in this case.

— Lori Fullbright (@LoriFullbright) April 18, 2018

The death penalty is not an option in this case since Michael Bever was 16 at the time of the crime.

— Lori Fullbright (@LoriFullbright) April 18, 2018

Attorneys told jurors once they took oath, they became officers of the court & are just as important to the process as attorneys & Judge when it comes to getting justice.

— Lori Fullbright (@LoriFullbright) April 18, 2018

Several jurors admitted they didn’t realize being a juror was such a huge responsibility. Some said they found it intimidating. One said he found it exciting. Several said it’s important to do their best, listen, folo the law.

— Lori Fullbright (@LoriFullbright) April 18, 2018

Attorneys told jurors, they are not an island, but must work together when they deliberate, to be open to discussion. Attorneys said being a good juror means self-policing...not talking to each other or family or friends until after case over.

— Lori Fullbright (@LoriFullbright) April 18, 2018

Attorneys will choose 12 jurors plus two alternates to hear the evidence against Michael Bever. We will be hear everyday until it is over, reporting on Twitter, Facebook and Newson6.

— Lori Fullbright (@LoriFullbright) April 18, 2018

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Jury selection continues in the trial of a Broken Arrow teenager accused of murdering five members of his family and severely injuring another.

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