Blago jurors to be ID'd day after verdict

March 1, 2011 9:32:20 AM PST
Judge James Zagel said he will release the names of jurors in the second trial of former governor Rod Blagojevich the day after the verdict is read.

Judge Zagel said those names will be released at 9 a.m. Last week, Zagel chastised the "the onslaught of a rapacious media" on jurors that came after the verdict in Blagojevich's first trial. He said he was considering giving the jurors "no trespassing" signs.

Judge Zagel said the media's treatment of jurors was at time "harassment" and included repeated knocking on doors, calls at all hours, and even a helicopter over a home.

Media groups argue there's a compelling public interest in disclosing jurors' names as soon as possible, in part so reporters can help determine if panelists reached a decision properly.

Blagojevich's retrial starts April 20. In the first trial, Blagojevich was found guilty on one count and jurors were deadlocked on 23 others. The judge has since dropped three of those charges at the request of the prosecution.

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