'Something I Can Do for Heather': A Huge Trial Starts

James Alex Fields accused of driving his car into Charlottesville counterprotesters
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 26, 2018 9:25 AM CST
A car plows into a crowd in Charlottesville on Aug. 12, 2017.   (Ryan M. Kelly/The Daily Progress via AP, File)
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(Newser) – Small town, big trial: Jury selection got underway Monday in the trial of a man accused of deliberately ramming his car into a crowd of people protesting a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va., last year. James Alex Fields, 21, faces charges including first-degree murder for the incident on Aug. 12, 2017, that left 32-year-old Heather Heyer dead and many others injured. Details:

  • The pool: Fields' attorney pushed unsuccessfully to have the trial moved outside of Charlottesville, arguing that it will be impossible to find impartial jurors, reports the Daily Progress. The judge disagreed. The pool of potential jurors is 360 people, and it's expected to take until midweek to settle on a panel.
  • A witness: "He broke both of my legs, two parts of my spine, and one rib, and then [I] also had a pretty big laceration that had to be sewn up," Star Peterson tells NPR. She plans to testify. "It's something I can do for Heather," she tells the AP. "If I can be part of prosecuting the person who killed her, then that's something I can do for her memory."

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