The consultant who helped develop the jury in O.J. Simpson's 1995 murder trial has been working with Kyle Rittenhouse's legal team.
Jo-Ellan Dimitrius' firm confirmed to CNN that the consultant has worked "hand in hand" with the attorneys defending the accused Kenosha gunman for the last four to six months. She was in attendance at jury selection, and other hearings, and seen seated next to Wendy Rittenhouse, the defendant's mother.
The jury Dimitrius consulted on in Simpson trial ultimately acquitted him of murder.
Rittenhouse's team hired Dimitrius to help create the profile for the "right" juror in the case. Firm Vice President Randy Peukert said Dimitrius is the best "probably on the planet" at her work.
Consultants are routinely hired by defense teams to weigh on in the selection of a jury.
"There's always research done," Peukert told CNN. "It really gives them [the defense] the added benefit and confidence ... what they are presenting with resonate with a jury."
A pool of 20 people –– 11 women and nine men –– were originally selected out of 179 prospective jurors to sit on the panel for the now 18-year-old accused of shooting two men during protests over the police shooting of Jacob Blake, Jr.
Since the highly-watched trial began, two people were dismissed from serving on the jury –– one for medical concerns and the other who told a joke about Blake's shooting to a court deputy.
The judge in the trial, Bruce Schroeder whittled down the charges against Rittenhouse. As of Wednesday (November 17), Rittenhouse faces five felonies: first-degree intentional homicide, first-degree reckless homicide, attempted first-degree intentional homicide, and two counts of recklessly endangering safety.
If convicted on the most serious charge, Rittenhouse could face a mandatory life prison sentence.
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