Jury Selection Begins in Intoxication Manslaughter Case

Tuesday, December 7, 2010 - 8:33am

Fifty-nine potential jurors walked into the 357th District Court on Monday morning as the defense and prosecution prepared for the trial of  James Edward Pearson's intoxication manslaughter trial.

With number in hand, each prospective jurors sat down and listened to specific information given by the court, regarding the trial. Prosecutors showed a Power point presentation pin pointing specific facts these potential jurors should look for during the trial if they are chosen as part of the 12 person jury.

Pearson is accused of being involved in a three car accident that left 16 year-old Yanely Mendoza dead at the scene. The accident happened along FM 345 between San Benito and Rio Honda on October 26. 2008. Mendoza's sister, 20 year-old Yamily Mendoza was also injured in the accident and she died at a San Antonio hospital three months ago. DPS arrested Pearson in September 2009 and charged him with one count of intoxication manslaughter and one count on intoxication assault.

Pearson was indicted on both charges last March and was arraigned the following month where he pleaded not guilty. A trial on this case was scheduled to begin nearly four months ago, but Judge Alejandro declared a mistrial after learning one of the jurors was allegedly the defendant's friend.

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