CANTON For one juror, an Ogdensburg mans murder trial has turned into a nightmare.
A juror who sits on the trial of Wayne T. Oxley Jr. said she dreamed Oxley was chasing her around her familys barn with a baseball bat. She also told the court she started crying over the weekend when she saw her father sitting in a recliner that resembled the chair where Bernard A. Trickey Jr. was found.
Despite a request from defense attorney Peter A. Dumas, Malone, to remove the juror, St. Lawrence County Judge Jerome J. Richards said the juror is not unqualified.
Its something we need to keep an eye on, Judge Richards said.
The juror said her family doesnt believe she has the ability to continue, and her husband urged her to tell the court after she had the nightmare.
She assured Judge Richards she would not let it affect her decision making.
A psychological scientist from the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, New York, said this situation could be a disadvantage to Oxley.
Its clear she has formed a negative emotional opinion, said Dr. Saul Kassin. If I were on the defense team, that would make me nervous.
Dr. Kassin, a specialist in forensic psychology who has testified in numerous trials, said he is not an expert on the effects of dreaming, but understands dreams do have an effect.
People often have difficulty separating reality from fantasy, Dr. Kassin said.
Judge Richardss decision also came as a surprise to Oxley.
I just about fell over, he said. I was pretty shocked she stayed on the jury. I kind of lost my breath.
District Attorney Nicole M. Duve said the court shouldnt hold someones dreams against them.
Dreams are dreams, you cant make them not happen, Ms. Duve said.
Oxley is accused of beating his neighbor Mr. Trickey to death with a wooden baseball bat in 2005.
He was convicted of second-degree murder, but an appellate court sent the case back for a retrial.
His second trial ended in a hung jury.
Ms. Duve spent most of her time Monday questioning Lt. Andrew D. Kennedy of the Ogdensburg Police Department, who was a detective when the murder happened. Lt. Kennedy, who previously lived in Oxleys house, found the alleged murder weapon in Oxleys basement. She also presented the bat to the jury as evidence.
During testimony, Lt. Kennedy said John D. Shannon led investigators to Oxleys house.
He also said investigators found a piece of paper with blood on it near the bat, but blood was not found anywhere else in the house.
Ms. Duve introduced photographs of Oxleys basement to the jury. Testimony is expected to continue Tuesday morning.