Local 4's Sandra Ali is in the courtroom Thursday as jury selection gets underway for Mitchell Young, who is charged with murder in the attack on the Cipriano family.
Still interviewing potential members of the jury pool.
Mitchell Young's demeanor seems different in the last hour. He seems more "vested."
He keeps looking around the courtroom. Making eye contact more.
At one point, he was looking point blank at a group of potential jurors before they were excused for the day.
In a rare expression of emotion, Mitchell Young, just turned to a group of people in court and smiled. It was big grin.
This interesting question keeps coming up while interviewing potential jurors:
When was the last time you heard or watched something on TV about this case? Was it in the last week?
Also, what have you heard about a possible plea deal? Have you heard any talk about plea bargains?
Do you have any reason to believe there shouldn't be a trial?
Before jury selection resumed I approached those two women sitting behind Mitchell Young.
I know they're related to him in some way. But they wouldn't tell me.
They said, "no comment."
I wish I knew the relationship.
They are the only 2 people here on his behalf.
Another potential juror is interviewing now.
He's talking about how he heard about a plea deal on TV.
He said based on that he formulated an opinion the defendants are guilty.
Every single time a potential juror walks in Mitchell Young starts taking notes about them. It appears he's jotting down their name and juror badge number.
The woman talking to the judge right now says she can't shake the feelings and emotions associated with this case.
She seems emotional right now. Even upset and nervous. She says she finds the violence of the case disturbing.
I think people are starting to look exhausted.
Mitchell is sitting with his hands folded.
He's not really looking at anyone.
No eye contact. But he's starting again to take what appear to be really detailed notes on each potential juror.
Judge says things are taking a lot longer than anticipated.
She's now telling 7 potential jurors they are being sent home.
They'll have to come back tomorrow morning at 8:30 a.m.
Judge Kumar reminds them not to post anything on social media to let anyone know they maybe selected as a possible juror.
The first potential juror (since our break) is now being questioned by the judge.
She's an African-American older woman. She says she got all of her information on the case by watching Local 4. She says she isn't sure if the boys are innocent or guilty. She says she's really not sure.
Breaking for lunch for an hour.
7 possible members of the jury pool.
Potential jurors 5 & 6 now questioned and dismissed.
Both admit they have strong opinions and emotions about the case. They both used the same terms.
Barbaric. Cowardly. Horrific.
I can't tell you how many times today I've heard those terms.
Not a surprise they were both excused.
Potential Juror #7
She's being interviewed right now.
First African-American possible juror I've seen today.
She's telling the judge she heard details of the case being discussed at her nail salon. She tells the judge she can't be fair because she thinks it was a horrific crime. A horrible crime, is what she calls it.
She says her mind is already made up.
She is excused. Not in the jury pool.
Eight interview underway.A young woman. She's telling attorneys she gets most of her news reports from Local 4. But she say she hasn't watched the news in maybe a year?
She's in. If you're keeping track we now have five potential jurors in the jury pool.
A fifth person now being interviewed. He's also a Catholic Central grad.
He says he's been following the case closely because of his alma mater.
He says he's too intimately connected with the case, the school. Says it would be difficult to be objective.
He says his opinion: "I think Mitchell Young did do it."
Attorney asks: "can you give Mr. Young a clean slate?"
Potential juror says "I would find that difficult."
He has been excused. Not surprising.
One potential juror is being interviewed right now by judge Kumar.
She's asking him if he can set aside what he's heard in the "media" about the case. He says he can't promise that.
Potential juror telling attorneys he watched media coverage about this case the past week.
Now attorneys for both prosecution and defense are arguing does this first potential juror have a "strong opinion the defendant is guilty."
Judge Kumar decides to leave this man in the jury pool as a potential juror.
We might have our first person in the jury pool. Caucasian man in his late 50's would be my best guess.
Judge asks each potential juror the same questions.
When was the last time you heard anything about this case?
Where did you get your news reports from? TV?
Have you ever talked about this case with any friends or family members?
Potential jurors keep using the same words: baseball bat, drugs, spice, young boys.
The issue of a plea bargain being talked about over the last week or so keeps coming up over and over.
Potential juror number four just walked in.
He's referring to the crime as "barbaric."
This man said he hasn't heard anything about a possible plea bargain.
Says he hasn't watched TV in the last week. But then he called it a "cowardly crime."
He keeps using these strong terms over and over.
I can't imagine he would make it into the jury pool.
So far out of the 4 potential jurors I've heard being interviewed I think only 1 sounded like she didn't have a real strong opinion. I guess that doesn't really matter, right? As long as you have the ability to set your opinion aside so you're able to serve fairly.
This potential juror being interviewed right now is a Catholic Central alumni. Defense questioning whether that's an issue.
Judge Kumar just welcomed potential jurors. I had to change seats in the courtroom because they needed more space to accommodate everybody.
I think there are nearly 50 potential jurors here.
Judge just gave instructions to the jury. They are already starting to excuse people.
I'm stunned by how many potential jurors are already raising their hands to talk about their personal ties to the family/case.
One woman was just excused. She said she cared for the family at a local hospital.
Another woman just raised her hand and said she attended the same church as the Cipriano family. An eye doctor also just told the judge some of the family members are patients of his.
Another man potential juror just said he grew up in Farmington hills across the street from possible relatives.
A woman, another potential juror, was just excused.
She left the courtroom in tears. Said she was a close, personal, family friend.
Mitchell Young walked into the courtroom at 9:30 about an hour after the scheduled start time.
Wearing a dark suit, he looks very different from the young man we've seen over the last few months.
He turned and smiled at two women.
Those women are seated in an area marked "family." But we don't know they're exact relationship.
Young spent a few minutes gazing at them, the women looked like they were about to cry.
He looks really clean-cut. His attorney Mike McCarthy spent some time adjusting his client's tie. Making sure he looks presentable.
More soon, it looks like judge Kumar is about to enter the courtroom.
Jury already picked for co-defendant Tucker Cipriano
A jury was selected Wednesday for Young's co-defendant, Tucker Cipriano.
Cipriano's jury in Oakland County Circuit Court has six men and eight women, including two alternates.
Robert Cipriano was killed inside his Farmington Hills home in April 2012. His wife, Rose, and another son, Sal, were also attacked. Sal Cipriano still is in a hospital.
Tucker Cipriano and Young are charged with murder.
- Jury seated in Cipriano murder trial
- Cipriano family supporters battle prosecutor for plea deal
- Tucker Cipriano has new look for trial
- Prosecutor works to keep Cipriano witnesses from media
- Cipriano Murder: The events leading to now