Jury Selection Starts in Puffy Trial
Jury selection began in the gun possession and bribery trial of rapper Sean "Puffy" Combs yesterday (Jan. 17) in New York with the judge promising prospective jurors it will be an interesting case. "IJury selection began in the gun possession and bribery trial of rapper Sean "Puffy" Combs yesterday (Jan. 17) in New York with the judge promising prospective jurors it will be an interesting case. "If you ever had a desire to serve on a jury, I can assure you, professionally and personally, this will be a good one," Judge Charles Solomon told prospective jurors, as he assembled a pool of 150 people to hear a case that could last five to six weeks.
Selection ended for the day without any jurors chosen. Earlier, Solomon denied a defense motion to delay the proceeding because of negative publicity surrounding the case.
Combs, his bodyguard, Anthony "Wolf" Jones, 34, and rapper Jamal "Shyne" Barrow, 19, were arrested Dec. 27, 1999, after Barrow allegedly shot three people in Club New York, a Times Square nightspot. Barrow faces attempted murder charges.
Combs was charged with two counts of illegal possession of a weapon after police found a pistol in the Lincoln Navigator used by Combs and his girlfriend, actress-singer Jennifer Lopez, to flee the nightclub. Police said a second handgun was thrown out of the vehicle.
Combs was also charged with bribery for allegedly offering to pay his driver $50,000 to claim ownership of the gun in the car. Police said Combs offered the driver a diamond ring Lopez had given him as collateral.
In an interview earlier this month, Combs said the gun was not his. He has pleaded innocent.
Lopez, who testified before the grand jury that indicted Combs, was not charged in the case, and may be called to testify for the defense. It was not known if Combs would testify.
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