Her role now will be in a triple murder trial of a man charged with killing her mother, brother and 7-year-old nephew. Hudson is expected to be present every day once testimony begins, which includes a list of 300 witnesses.
In the meantime, she’s still go to do her work. Hudson will appear on “American Idol” this Thursday, but the jury will be discouraged from watching television coverage of the trial during proceedings to avoid altered perspectives and Hudson’s celebrity image could also warp their reception of testimonials.
Legal experts widely agree on the No. 1 challenge at trials involving megastars: It’s identifying 12 jurors able and willing to assess guilt solely on what they hear in court.
Hudson will need to refrain from overt displays of emotion as potentially starstruck jurors’ eyes dart back at her, said Gerald Uelmen, a defense attorney at O.J. Simpson’s murder trial.
“The risk is that jurors may be watching her rather than testifying witnesses, and they could be influenced by how she reacts,” Uelmen said. “She would be well advised not to engage in any facial expressions or outbursts. That could be grounds for a mistrial.”
William Balfour, the 30-year-old estranged husband of Hudson’s sister, is accused of shooting the family in a jealous rage because Julia Hudson was dating another man. Jennifer Hudson, also 30, and Balfour grew up in the same South Side neighborhood.
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