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Blago Retrial: Daily Journal 4/26

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Blago Journal: Opening Statements Likely Monday

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What to Expect Today:

Jury questioning continues on Day 4 of Rod Blagojevich's retrial, but Judge James Zagel hopes to wrap it up by this afternoon. Zagel said he wants 40 jurors in the pool before making final decisions on 12 jurors and six alternates as early as Tuesday. On Monday, 25 potential jurors remain in the pool, including a woman with tickets to "The Oprah Show" who doesn't want to miss the taping.

Those dismissed included a Chicago Tribune journalist and a man who recently found a job after being laid off for months.

Zagel's goal is to have the jury seated by Wednesday.

The Day's Updates:

7:15 p.m. -- Judge James Zagel says he now anticipates opening statements to take place on Monday.

6:30 p.m. -- Judge James Zagel is said to be making decisions on several motions before him.

5:25 p.m. -- Juror #169, who said Blagojevich "owes the people an explanation," is dismissed.  Despite defense objection, Juror #170 remains. [Read More...]

5:00 p.m. -- Several jurors purged, including #159, the nurse at Childrens Memorial Hospital.  Juror #160, with the "bleeping" ringtones, remains.  For now.

3:07 p.m. -- Potential Juror #170:  "It would probably take a strong case on Mr. Blagojevich's part to convince me that he was not guilty."

3 p.m. -- Potential Juror #169: "After all the media attention and the appearances by the defendant in the media, he owes the people an explanation. He should take the stand and explain."

Noon --  Potential Juror #160, a chef, admitted he had downloaded ringtones for his phone featuring the "bleeping phone calls." [Read more...]

"I believe he is guilty," he wrote on his questionnaire, "and has a different private persona and a false public persona." Despite this, he said he could be fair.

11:43 a.m. -- Potential Juror #159 is a registered nurse at Children's Memorial Hospital. [Read more...]

9:45 a.m. -- Third day of jury selection begins. The former jury foreman from Blagojevich's first trial, James Matsumoto, is in the crowd watching.

Previous Journals:

Monday, April 25, 2011 -- Jury Selection Resumes

Thursday, April 21, 2011 -- Jurors Questioned

Wednesday, April 20, 2011 -- Welcome to the Retrial

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