Bulger judge denies request to sequester jury

bulger whitey bulger boston
James “Whitey” Bulger is seen in a state police surveillance image taken in 1980.
Credit: U.S. Attorney’s office

The 18 jurors assigned to the trial of James “Whitey” Bulger will not have to be locked away from their families, televisions and homes when it comes time to deliberate. 

Judge Denise Casper struck down on Tuesday a request by Bulger’s attorney J.W. Carney Jr. that the jury be sequestered during its deliberations.

“I’m not inclined to inconvenience these jurors at this juncture,” Casper said, adding that she is “confident” the men and women will continue to heed her warning not to pay attention to media reports about the trial.

Carney filed a motion late Sunday night seeking the sequestration. In it he argued that the jury would be exposed to “highly prejudicial” media reports about Bulger and cited columns and opinion pieces mainly by Globe Columnist Kevin Cullen.

The defense is already through its first couple of witnesses and is moving closer to resting its case, meaning the end is likely days or a week away. Casper noted the tardiness of the request and said that she felt if she were to order the sequestration of the jury now it could hurt both sides because jurors may become disgruntled by the lack of advance notice.

Follow Michael Naughton on Twitter @metrobosmike


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