Jayson Williams Jury Selection Begins
About 150 prospective jurors gathered shortly after 8:30 a.m. at the former First Reformed Church, which now serves as the jury assembly room for the adjoining courthouse, to fill out forms and see a video about the jury process, says the news service. A second pool of 150 prospective jurors was due to go through the same process in the afternoon.
The 6'10" Williams and his wife, Tanya, arrived at the courthouse around 8:15 a.m. but reportedly walked directly into an elevator after passing through security. Neither responded to questions from the press corps.
The jury pool is said to be three times the regular size because of the difficulty finding jurors who will be able to serve through a two-month trial. The next hearing dates are reportedly set for Feb. 2-3.
The retired New Jersey Nets center and former NBA analyst for NBC, 35, is accused of shooting and killing a limousine driver, Costas Christofi, on February 14, 2002, in the bedroom of Williams's plush New Jersey estate, then trying to cover up the incident.
Williams could be sentenced to 30 years in prison if convicted of aggravated manslaughter and 10 years if found guilty of reckless manslaughter.
Other charges, including witness and evidence tampering and unlawful weapons possession, carry sentences of up to 10 years each upon conviction.
Williams has been free on bail. His lawyers have maintained that the shooting was accidental.