Accused cop-killer trial date set; jury selection to be in Caddo

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SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) A new trial date has been set for the man accused in the 2015 death of a Shreveport police officer.

Jury selection in the 1st degree murder trial of Grover Cannon, who is accused in the August 5, 2015 shooting death of Thomas LaValley, will begin on June 17, 2019, in the Caddo Parish Courthouse.

This will be the third time this year, Cannon has been scheduled for trial. The first trial, scheduled for Jan. 14, 2019, was aborted on the day it was slated to begin, due to publicity surrounding the shooting death of an off-duty Shreveport police officer in a personal domestic incident the week before. 

Due to the publicity, presiding Judge Ramona Emmanuel granted a motion to change the venue for jury selection, and bring jurors up to Caddo Parish for the trial.

The 19th Judicial District in East Baton Rouge Parish stepped up, summoning a jury pool of 400 for the selection process, and a trial date of March 25 was set. 

The judge, her staff, along with the prosecutors, employees from the Caddo Clerk’s office and deputies and special response team members to accompany Cannon all went to Baton Rouge for jury selection. 

But after three weeks of jury selection, with the defense offering motions to try to halt the proceedings and appealing to higher courts when they were denied, they learned the Baton Rouge court had not summoned any prospective jurors in the 18-to-26 year-old age group.

That was enough for the Louisiana Supreme Court to call a halt to the trial.
Back in Caddo Parish, on April 24, prosecutors filed a Motion asking Emanuel to reconsider the earlier Change of Venue order and to issue a gag order, meaning neither the prosecution nor the defense may speak with the media.

On May 10th, she granted the order, and set June 17 as the trial date. 

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