Jury could be seated in murder trial of ex-New England Patriots player Aaron Hernandez

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FILE - In this Dec. 22, 2014 file photo, former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez, left, attends a pretrial hearing in Fall River, Mass. Hernandez is accused of murdering semi-professional football player Odin Lloyd. A jury is expected to be seated for opening arguments in his murder trial as early as Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015. Judge Susan Garsh had cleared 53 potential jurors after individually questioning them to weed out people who are biased, have a hardship or have a valid reason to be excused. Lawyers from both sides will have the chance to eliminate 18 people each from the final pool on Monday for any reason. Eighteen jurors will be seated. (AP Photo/Brian Snyder, Pool, File)


FALL RIVER, Massachusetts — A jury could be seated in the Massachusetts murder trial of former New England Patriots star tight end Aaron Hernandez.

Bristol County Superior Court Judge Susan Garsh has settled on a pool of 53 potential jurors who made it through screening for biases and hardships.

Prosecutors and the defense are expected to be allowed Monday to excuse up to 18 people each without a reason.

Eighteen people must be seated on the jury, which will include six alternates.

If both sides use all 18 of their challenges, there will not be enough jurors. The judge will return to the slow process of questioning individual jurors to weed out those with biases or other valid reasons not to serve.

Opening statements were set for Tuesday, but will be delayed because of the winter storm.

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