BRUNSWICK, Ga. – The man accused of leaving his 22-month-old son to die in a hot SUV spoke out in court on Thursday.
Ross Harris is facing numerous charges, including malice murder, felony murder and cruelty to children, in the death of his young son, Cooper. The boy was found in the back seat of Harris’ SUV back in June 2014. Harris claimed that it was a tragic accident.
The trial has been moved to Brunswick, Ga. after a judge ruled that an impartial jury could not be found in Cobb County.
After more than a week, the judge declared the final jury pool complete Wednesday with 45 potential jurors selected.
Both sides returned to the courtroom on Thursday for motions hearing, one of which dealt with a woman chosen for the final pool.
The juror in question stated that she had once belonged to a “Justin Ross Harris Trial Watch” Facebook page.
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The woman said she had left the group, but lawyers claimed she was still on it. Screen grabs from 2014 showed she posted, “I don’t support the death penalty but I think they should give him as much time as they can.”
The juror admitted to the post but said she didn’t mean to mislead anyone.
The defense argued to keep the juror in the pool, saying that the juror had been throughout the selection process.
Harris himself spoke out and told the judge that he did not want the juror to be removed from the pool.
“Your honor, I do not want this juror struck,” he said.
Judge Mary Staley said that while Harris’ opinion is not totally “determinative, it bears some consideration.” She then ruled the juror will stay in the pool.
Harris’ statements marked the first time many courtroom observers remembered hearing him actually speak in court.
After Thursday’s motions, the court is expected to recess until Oct. 3.
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