05/24/2010

Jury selection begins in Ill. police torture trial

Associated Press

CHICAGO — Jury selection is under way in the trial of former Chicago Police Lt. Jon Burge, who is accused of lying about the long-ago torture of suspects.

By late morning Monday, three of the eight people questioned had been excused by the judge _ including a woman who told the federal judge that she couldn't be fair if asked to be a juror at Burge's trial.

Burge has pleaded not guilty to obstruction of justice and perjury. He's accused of lying when he denied in a civil lawsuit that he and his officers tortured suspects in the 1970s and 80s. He faces a maximum of 45 years in prison if convicted of all charges.

Burge's trial in front of U.S. District Judge Joan Humphrey Lefkow is expected to last six weeks.

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