Jury seated in Hudson murder trial

April 10, 2012 3:04:28 PM PDT
A jury has been chosen in the trial of William Balfour, the man accused of murdering Jennifer Hudson's mother, brother and nephew in 2008.

The jury selection process, which began last week, moved quickly. Within nine hours Monday, the judge and attorneys chose 14 jurors and dismissed 10, mostly because of their financial concerns about missing work for a month, which is how long the trial could last.

Another group of 20 to 35 potential jurors was screened Tuesday. Four were chosen and by about 2 p.m., the jury was complete.

The jury will decide the fate of William Balfour, the estranged brother-in-law of Jennifer Hudson. Judge Charles Burns and attorneys paid careful attention to find jurors who were not star-struck or too sympathetic to the singer and actress.

One woman said she was a fan and could not be fair. She was dismissed.

However, one of the 14 jurors chosen was a woman who said she did not recognize Jennifer Hudson or know about the case.

Some others also said they did not recognize Jennifer Hudson.

The jury is diverse, composed of eight men and 10 women of various backgrounds and occupations. They include a former Jesse White tumbler, a retired CTA dispatcher, a courier for FedEx and a Vanguard Health Systems employee who holds a master's degree.

Judge Burns said he has not determined who will be the six alternates.

A tired looking Balfour stared at each juror as they were questioned individually by the judge and the lawyers. If convicted in two murders, he faces an automatic life sentence without parole.

Jennifer Hudson is expected to attend the trial, which begins Monday, April 23. She is on the witness list, but that does not mean she will testify.