Potential jurors in trial of man accused of killing Chatham priest to be questioned about Catholic Church sex-abuse ‘crisis,’ judge rules

| September 19, 2011

Prospective jurors in the trial of the man accused of slaying a Chatham priest will be asked a general question about the Catholic Church sex-abuse “crisis,” but they won’t be told it may affect this case unless they say they have a bias, a Superior Court judge ruled today.

Judge Thomas Manahan, sitting in Morristown, ruled that “voir dire” questions for all potential jurors will include, “Is there anything about the Catholic Church sex abuse crisis that would prevent you from being an impartial juror?”

If a potential juror’s reply is “yes,” he or she will then be asked more specific questions, including “If there is an allegation of sexual activity by a Roman Catholic priest, can you base your decision on the evidence, or would you be biased?”



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Category: Church Security

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