PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – All 12 jurors, in addition to four alternates, have been selected for the retrial of State Sen. Jane Orie.
Orie was accused of using legislative staff to do campaign work to benefit herself and her sister, Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin.
Before individual questioning began for jury selection, Judge Manning asked 101 potential jurors if they had heard about the case and 62 affirmed that they had.
A total of 65 people indicated they would have difficulty serving if the trial lasts the anticipated three weeks, including extended hours and possible Saturday sessions.
Orie’s first trial ended in a mistrial when Allegheny County Judge Jeffrey Manning ruled that a defense document had been forged. The DA claimed that Orie tried to absolve herself from responsibility by submitting a forged document that appeared to have her chief of staff take the blame for campaign work in her office.
District Attorney Stephen Zappala since filed an additional 16 counts against Orie.
The new charges included counts of forgery, perjury, tampering with or fabricating evidence, obstructing the administration of justice and improper campaign reporting.
These charges include both felonies and misdemeanors.
Melvin has not been charged.