Lawyers in the Kilpatrick case look for Zombies - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Lawyers in the Kilpatrick case are looking for a few good Zombies

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DETROIT (WJBK) -

Sometimes it seems like the attorneys, particularly the defense attorneys, would like a jury full of people who have no opinion or who have lived under a rock for the past decade.

While you sometimes hear experts bemoan the staggering number of uninformed Americans, you'll hear just the opposite complaint in U.S. District Court these days.

Here, potential jurors are routinely challenged to prove that any opinion they may have of Kwame Kilpatrick or his three co-defendants won't unfairly prejudice them during the trial. If anyone has read, seen or heard anything about Kilpatrick or his cohorts, they are made to feel like they could never fairly render a verdict.

It often seems to those of us in the pews that the lawyers are looking for zombies.

Zombies sure do seem to be in vogue now -- along with vampires and werewolves with great abs -- but the real goal in this game is not to find people who cannot be influenced. It's to find people who have yet to be influenced.

As Judge Nancy Edmunds has repeatedly pointed out, there's nothing wrong with having an opinion – as long as you can set it aside and view the evidence objectively before reaching a verdict.

Ironically, the same attorneys griping that potential jurors are lying when they say they don't have an opinion of Kilpatrick are the same attorneys who pounce on any juror who shares even the mildest opinion of the former mayor.

During a break in the lawyers' search for the next zombie last week, Kilpatrick showed that he has an eye for bloodsuckers.

[Since the lawyers have savaged the media throughout the jury screening process, feel free to insert your favorite "lawyers are bloodsuckers" joke here.]

Hizzoner turned to a nice-looking young man sitting behind him, who works for one of the lawyers, and told him: "You kinda look like a vampire … A daywalker."

It was meant to be a compliment.

Follow M.L. Elrick's coverage of the Kilpatrick & Co. trial daily on Fox 2 and at www.myfoxdetroit.com. Contact him at ml.elrick@foxtv.com or via Twitter or Facebook.

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