Judge: Trial in police officer's death to stay in Pontiac; defense says jury pool tainted


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PONTIAC, Illinois — The trial of a man charged in the death of a Pontiac police officer will not be moved to another county.

The (Bloomington) Pantagraph reports that (http://bit.ly/1m5PcJg ) Livingston County Judge Robert Travers on Wednesday rejected defense arguments that an unbiased jury cannot be seated.

Jason Collins of South Carolina is charged with reckless homicide and drunken driving in the death of officer Casy Kohlmeier (KOHL-mire) in October 2013. Authorities say his pickup truck struck Kohlmeier's squad car as it was parked in an interstate median.

Defense attorneys claim that survey of 150 people in Pontiac proves the potential jury pool is tainted by extensive publicity.

The judge says the survey is too small, but the trial could be moved if there is difficulty seating an impartial panel during jury selection.

Information from: The Pantagraph, http://www.pantagraph.com

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