Controversy Swirls Around Bobby Ferguson Jury Selection

DETROIT (WWJ) – Controversy is brewing surrounding the jury that will decide the fate of a close friend of former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick.

Bobby Ferguson and two other men are accused of rigging bids to win a $12 million contract for a low-income housing project in Detroit.

Court records show that the second to last African-American was dismissed from the jury pool in large part because of her two tattoos.

WWJ Legal Analyst and Talk Radio 1270 host Charlie Langton says that’s not against the law,adding that any and all prejudices are “fair game.”

“Under the rules of selecting a jury the lawyers can basically kick off jurors for any reason or no reason. Tattoos or long hair or blonde hair or a man or a woman — a hundred different ways that we discriminate against all the time,” said Langton.

“That’s why picking the jury is so important,” he said. “You’ve got to get the body language of that juror right away, and you’ve only get a couple of moments to do that.”

Defense attorneys will attempt on Monday to have the jury thrown out, saying it doesn’t represent the African-American defendants.

(For more on the case itself, click here).

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