Peterson Jury Selection Causes Changes In, Out Of Durham Courthouse
Posted May 5, 2003 4:45 a.m. EDT
Updated December 9, 2006 9:56 p.m. EST
DURHAM, N.C. — Due to the jury selection phase of the Mike Peterson trial, getting around the Durham County Courthouse Monday was more like maneuvering Interstate 40 at rush hour.
Monday was the first day of jury selection for the murder trial. Peterson is accused of killing his wife, Kathleen, in December 2001. Due to the trial popularity, several court matters had to be switched to other locations in the courthouse.
"Since we're in this courtroom with this trial, we had to move it down the hall to the civil courtroom and move the civil courtroom around a bit and also stagger the start times of various criminal actions," trial court administrator Kathy Shuart said.
The largest courtroom in the courthouse was not even big enough to hold the jury pool. Deputies were placed on chair duty.
"There probably was confusion on the part of some folks," Shuart said.
Signs of the Mike Peterson trial were evident outside. Lanes usually used for driving were reserved for media representatives.
"There's nowhere to park. No offense to you all, but there's news vans everywhere and the streets are blocked off," said Erin Rejholec, who had a court date.
Jury selection is scheduled to last for several weeks.