Busy day in court: Another juror dismissed, Fitch trial delayed until Thursday


Opening statements in the trial of Brian Fitch Sr., who is charged with fatally shooting Mendota Heights Officer Scott Patrick last July, were delayed until Thursday.

Judge Mary Theisen delayed opening statements until Thursday at 9 a.m. after Fitch's attorney asked for a continuance, KSTP says.

These two days will give both sides time to investigate an alleged confession, in which prosecutors say Fitch admitted to another prisoner he shot Patrick because he "had no choice," noting he had drugs in his car, the Star Tribune reports.

Opening statements were initially delayed until 2 p.m. Tuesday after Theisen dismissed a juror who said she feared for her safety after several media outlets reported details about her job delivering medicines to inmates at the Stearns County jail, FOX 9 reports.

Prospective jurors were called back Tuesday to replace the woman who was dismissed. This was the second time a juror was excused because she feared for her safety, reports say.

Several members of Patrick's family, including his wife and daughters, were in court Tuesday, reports note.

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