Hello and welcome to something different today on GrantSmithEllis.com.
I will be reporting live from the first day of trial for former Fall River Major Jaisel Correia, the then-23 year old Mayoral prodigy who quickly fell from grace following his arrest on extortion charges by Federal authorities in September of 2019.
According to a press release from Federal officials at the time, Correia was "arrested and charged for allegedly extorting marijuana vendors for hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes; extorting a building owner for cash and a Rolex watch in exchange for activating the water supply to a commercial building; and demanding that his chief of staff give him half of her salary in return for appointing her and allowing her to keep her city job".
The trial is taking place in Boston at the Federal Courthouse and is expected to last 3-4 weeks (with jury selection taking place over the next 4 days).
Find rolling updates below;
10:00AM; The Court has sent out an update on timing; proceedings will be muted until 1:15PM or so, at which point another round of Juror questioning will begin (also on mute).
9:28AM: Jurors are now going through the process of filling out an intake form, to be handed in to the Court for review. The Judge, the Defense and the Federal Prosecutors are not in the courtroom for this portion of the hearing.
9:26AM; And we've taken our first break. Will update as soon as the Judge returns to the Courtroom.
9:25AM; The Judge outlines the schedule for each day of the trial; Court will be in session from 9AM-12:30 each day, then break for 45 minutes for lunch, followed by a return to the Courtroom until the end of the day.
9:23AM; "The anticipation is that this case will take 3-4 weeks and presentation of evidence will begin next Monday", says the Court.
9:22AM; The Court is making clear to prospective Jurors the importance of impartiality, noting that process is the right that enables all other rights. "You are the foundation of ordinary government", the Judge tells the potential jurors in the courtroom.
9:09AM; And The Court's microphone is working. Away we go. "We have transformed the Courtroom" says Judge Woodlock, due to Covid protocols. No more than 26 people allowed in the Courtroom at anyone time, says the Judge.
9:05AM; Court is in session, but it seems we are awaiting the Judge's microphone to be turned on.
8:58AM; The Courtroom of Judge Woodlock is quickly filling as reporters and members of the public await the Judge's appearance on screen.