Judge rejects defense claim that jury is tainted - WNEM TV 5

Judge rejects defense claim that jury is tainted in APS cheating scandal trial

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Fulton County Judge Jerry Baxter denied defense attorneys' motion that challenged the racial makeup of the jury pool in the Atlanta Public Schools cheating scandal trial.

Defense Attorney Bob Rubin filed a motion last month requesting the hearing. He claimed that African-Americans are underrepresented in the pool of potential jurors who received summons in the trial for 12 former APS educators accused of cheating on the CRCT in 2009.

"If the jury list was an APS teacher, it would be indicted," said Rubin.

Rubin put jury expert Jeffrey Martin on the stand to testify in the hearing Wednesday.

Martin said the difference between the percentage of African-American jurors summoned compared to the number of African-Americans in Fulton County is too large to be chalked up to chance.

Prosecutors put Phoenix Ayers-Gastin on the witness stand. Ayers-Gastin is over Fulton County Jury Services.

After the roughly two-hour hearing, Baxter rejected the defense's motion. The jury selection process will continue with the current pool.

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