Jury selection continued into day two for an Oklahoma City police officer’s murder trial. Attorneys spent the day questioning prospective jurors but have yet to seat a jury.
The prosecution and Sergeant Keith Sweeney’s defense team are being meticulous in their process of removing and keeping potential jury members.
Prospective jurors spoke openly with the Oklahoma County district attorney about police officers and aspects of the job. Several people voiced opinions about officers using de-escalation tactics to eliminate threats. They also touched on mental health issues and believe police should be trained in that area.
Sweeney is charged with second-degree murder. He was on duty when he shot and killed an unarmed man in 2017, who was threatening suicide by lighting himself on fire. Sweeney told investigators he thought the man was holding a knife.
Sweeney’s Attorney Gary James also spent several hours questioning potential jurors. He told them he would ask personal questions about their lives and backgrounds.
Sweeney has been in the headlines for nearly two years, his attorney spoke at length about media coverage and asked potential jurors if it would impact their ability to serve on a jury. Most of them replied that it would not.
Jury selection will continue on Wednesday. Once a jury is seated, attorneys will hold opening statements.