---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Tue, 16 Oct 2001 13:22:04 -0700
From: radtimes <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Judge Won't Delay Calif. Bomb Case
October 15, 2001
Judge Won't Delay Calif. Bomb Case
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- A judge Monday refused to postpone the trial of a
former Symbionese Liberation Army radical despite fears that she cannot get
a fair jury in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
Sara Jane Olson, 54, is charged with attempting to murder police officers
26 years ago by placing bombs under squad cars. The plot was aimed at
avenging the deaths of other SLA members.
``Certainly one of the issues to be addressed is how the events of Sept. 11
affected jurors,'' Superior Court Judge Larry Paul Fidler said. ``If we see
a pattern developing, we will have to rethink whether this case can move
forward. Right now I can't see any reason that it can't begin.''
The initial phase of jury selection began Monday.
Olson, 54, said: ``I'm ready to go forward with this episode of my life. We
should go ahead and see what happens. I'm hoping everyone will be honest.''
Her lawyer Shawn Snyder Chapman said she was concerned about taking the
case to a jury at a time when police are seen as heroes and Americans are
less inclined to question the credibility of police witnesses.
J. Tony Serra, another Olson attorney, said his recent cases have shown
pro-police bias. ``Some jurors plainly state that they will not judge
police officers by the same standards of credibility as ordinary
citizens,'' he said.
The defense had sought to delay jury selection until January.
``There is no valid reason that the turn of international events should
cause the judicial system, or any single case within it, to come to a
grinding halt,'' they said in court papers. They said they were confident a
fair jury could be found.
Olson, whose original name was Kathleen Soliah, was a fugitive until her
1999 arrest in Minnesota, where she was living under a new identity. She is
free on $1 million bail.
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