Juror dismissed in Cash Feenz re-trial
The 14-person jury of Roderick Washington?s double-murder retrial, two of whom were alternates, has been reduced by one after presiding Lee Circuit Judge Thomas Reese learned Thursday morning that one of the jurors attempted to discuss the case with a Cape Coral detective on multiple occasions.
The jury was seated hardly more than 12 hours ago in Washington’?s retrial in the 2006 double-murder of Alexis and Jeffrey Sosa, allegedly perpetrated by a rap group called the Cash Feenz. He is one of 10 accused in the binding, torturing and killing of the Sosas at a house party in Cape Coral.
Reese voiced his concerns about the male juror’?s prior vocalizations of the case to the detective.
“What he had to say to him I do not know, but it doesn’?t really matter,”? Reese said. ?“He has already demonstrated issues of concern to be a juror in this case. What concerns me more than anything: what, if anything, has he said to the other jurors??”
The juror told Reese he called the detective’?s son to discuss football, and mentioned his participation as a juror in passing to the detective, but did not recall prior conversations.
Each of the remaining 13 jurors said they had neither discussed the case nor watched media accounts.
Washington was convicted in May of two counts of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon. He faces life in prison if convicted of two counts each of first-degree murder and kidnaping, charges the jury deadlocked on during his first trial.
Attorneys are now giving their opening statements.