SAN ANTONIO – Jury selection in the capital murder trial of a 31-year-old man charged in the execution-style shooting death of a San Antonio police officer will resume Oct. 26, according to 379th District Court Judge Ron Rangel.
“This just seemed to be the right time,” Rangel said Monday. “The courthouse has slowed with in-person hearings and we can go slow.”
Jury selection in a capital murder trial in which the death penalty is being sought by the district attorney normally takes about five weeks to complete, Rangel said. “Picking this jury will take about 3 times longer than usual,” he said.
In early March, prospective jurors had completed questionnaires in the trial of Otis McKane, but the pandemic set in and jury selection was halted. McKane is accused of shooting San Antonio Police Department Detective Ben Marconi as he sat in his patrol car outside Public Safety Headquarters on the morning of Nov. 21, 2016.
Rangel explained that COVID-19 safety protocol will be in place during jury selection.
“We’re to make sure that between every juror everything in the courtroom is cleaned in the courtroom,” he said. “Making sure that we follow all protocol as it relates to safety.”
Rangel said each prospective juror will also be allowed to share any COVID-19 related concerns.
Testimony in McKane’s trial is not expected to begin until early 2021.