Mr. Sherrer has been formally charged with Domestic Battery in relation to an incident on March 29th, 2015.
Mr. Sherrer started his jury trial today in Sangamon County in front of Honorable Judge Davis.
The State called three witnesses to the stand, and rested their case.
Problem though, during the jury selection process this morning and into the afternoon the witnesses were waiting out in the hall way outside the courtroom. The entire time Springfield Police Officer Chance Tozer who was one of the witnesses was in the hallway.
Officer Tozer has been with the Springfield Police Force since December of 2002 and currently makes around $36 per hour or almost $76,000 annually.
It is safe to assume in his 13+ years of service he has been on his fair share of trials. Here is the issue though today, Officer Tozer neglected the number one rule in being a witness to NOT communicate to the potential jurors. Officer Tozer on more than one occasion was carrying on repeat conversations with members of the jury pool, some who ultimately ended up on the same jury he testified to.
Sangamon County Assistant States Attorney Brian Shaw (who represents the People of Illinois in this case), even walked up on Officer Tozer outside courtroom talking to jurors and DID NOT do anything about it.
Standby Counsel Attorney James Elmore who is assisting the Defense noticed the same issue, but as of the end of court today DID NOT bring it to the courts attention.
The Defendant Charles Sherrer is representing himself in this case and is currently in custody of the Sangamon County Jail, so naturally he was not present in the public hall way to see this.
The problem here becomes is this Veteran Officer’s actions clearly violated his duties as a witness outside of the courtroom. His actions of speaking with many of the potential jurors caused substantial and irreparable prejudice to the defendant’s case.
I thought our constitution provides an accused the right to a fair and impartial trial? Apparently in Sangamon County they just continue with the “we do what we want attitude”.
Exposed Publishing, NFP plans to find a way to directly bring this serious issue to the eye of the court before a verdict is reached. Naturally the press doesn’t get an opportunity to speak with the court, nor can we speak with an in custody defendant.
None of us know exactly what the Officer said to the jurors in these long conversations, but no matter what it should have NEVER happened to being with, he knew better.
Mr. Sherrer and his counsel are set to begin their side of the case tomorrow morning in front of Judge Davis at 8:45am in Courtroom 6D.
Please Note: Our staff observed this all happen first hand, we have also ordered the video footage. We will bring you more when we know it!