Kobe Bryant Hearings

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The judge in the Kobe Bryant sexual assault case today scheduled a series of pre-trial hearings that will last until nearly April.

That appears to make it unlikely the NBA star will have to worry about a trial until the season is over.

State District Judge Terry Ruckriegle announced a series of two-day hearings to start Feb. 2, March 1st and March 24. They will address what evidence can be used at trial.

Denver attorney Dan Recht is past president of the Colorado Criminal Defense Bar and says that makes it unlikely that the trial would begin before summer.

Meantime, Bryant's lawyers are asking the judge to close the February hearing,. They say evidence that will be discussed might taint the jury
pool and may not even be allowed at trial.

That evidence may include statements Bryant made to investigators. His lawyers say the statements were obtained illegally.

Attorney Tom Kelley, who represents media organizations said the hearing can be conducted without disclosing the content of Bryant's statements.

Kelly said his clients had not yet determined whether to oppose the request.