By Mark Guarino
Late Wednesday morning, the jury sent a note to Schroeder asking to review photos and video filed as evidence in the case.
Attorneys on both sides didn’t object to having jurors review the multimedia evidence, but under court rules the panel was required to look at the photos and video inside the courtroom, as opposed to the private room where they are deliberating Rittenhouse’s fate.
As Schroeder prepared to clear the courtroom to allow the jury to consider the evidence privately, there was some discussion between the judge and the attorneys about the rules governing the viewing of video and photo evidence — including whether jurors could watch it multiple times.
Schroeder blasted what he said were historical precedents that restricted juries from reviewing evidence. “I think … many of them are educated to make these decisions, and that’s where the founders of these people put power and not us,” Schroeder said. “I think it’s insulting to the jury that they have restrictions of these viewings.”
Both the judge and attorneys agreed that the jury could watch the videos as many times as they wanted. “If they want to watch it a hundred times,” that’s fine, Schroeder said.
But defense attorney Mark Richards objected to having the jury view a drone video from the state that he said is inadmissible because the defense received a low-resolution copy late last week, which was unlike the high-resolution one the state showed jurors in its closing. The dispute over that video is the subject of a defense motion for mistrial in the case, which is pending.
Schroeder said that he had not read the defense request and that he would not consider the motion until prosecutors had filed a response.