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Jury selection underway in murder trial

Posted: May 20, 2013 - 1:09pm  |  Updated: May 21, 2013 - 12:07am
David J. Paul, 24, appears in Juneau Superior Court on Monday as jury selection began in his trial. Paul is facing two counts of second-degree murder and one count of manslaughter for the August 2010 death of his 4-month-old daughter Rian Jambi Orr.  Michael Penn / Juneau Empire
Michael Penn / Juneau Empire
David J. Paul, 24, appears in Juneau Superior Court on Monday as jury selection began in his trial. Paul is facing two counts of second-degree murder and one count of manslaughter for the August 2010 death of his 4-month-old daughter Rian Jambi Orr.

Jury selection is underway in the trial against a 24-year-old Juneau man charged with murder and manslaughter in connection to the death of his 4-month-old baby in 2010.

Seventy prospective jurors were brought into Juneau Superior Court on Monday morning. That pool will be whittled down to 15 jurors. Three will serve as alternates leaving 12 jurors to decide the case.

Rian Jambi Orr was found seizing on Aug. 9, 2010, and was taken to the hospital where it was discovered she had a massive brain injury. Orr died a week later at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.

Prosecutors charged Paul a year after her death, saying he admitted to accidently dropping the infant and shaking her once right afterward to make her stop crying.

A judge threw out the indictment against Paul after finding Juneau police ignored Paul’s request for counsel and coerced involuntary statements from him, but the state re-indicted him in June 2012.

Paul is facing two separate counts of second-degree murder based on the state’s differing theories on how Orr died. If convicted, he could be facing up to 99 years in prison for each count, plus 20 years for manslaughter.

Jury selection continued until 5 p.m. Monday, and the process will continue Tuesday. Opening statements from attorneys will take place after that.

The trial is slated to last three or four weeks.

• Contact reporter Emily Russo Miller at 523-2263 or at emily.miller@juneauempire.com.

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