Jurors Questioned

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

Attorneys in Kobe Bryant's sexual assault case spent Monday questioning potential jurors behind closed doors.

District Judge Terry Ruckriegle also rejected a news media request to open more of the jury selection process to reporters. The judge cited Bryant's right to a fair trial, and potential jurors' right to privacy. Ruckriegle says those rights outweigh the "qualified" First Amendment rights of the media.

The judge also says closed-door questioning will be "very limited." Areas covered included personal experience with sexual assault, potential racial prejudice and pretrial publicity.

The 26-year-old Bryant has pleaded innocent to felony sexual assault, saying he had consensual sex with a then-19-year-old employee of the Vail-area resort where he was a guest last summer.

The Los Angeles Lakers star faces four years to life in prison,
or 20 years to life on probation, and a fine of up to $750,000 if convicted.

Opening statements are expected September 7th.

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