Potential jurors in Chicago gang trial answer questions on second day

Potential jurors were questioned Wednesday in the trial of six alleged members of a violent Chicago street gang.

- Potential jurors were questioned Wednesday in the trial of six alleged members of a violent Chicago street gang.

The jurors who do get selected will remain anonymous for their safety.

Prosecutors say Paris Poe is a cold-blooded killer. But on Wednesday, he and five other alleged members of the Hobos street gang quietly introduced themselves to potential jurors, hoping to convince them otherwise.

Eighteen jurors--twelve regulars and six alternates--will be selected for the three month trial. The pool of potential jurors included a retired carpenter, a bartender, a pipefitter and a puppeteer.

On questionnaires, they were asked for their opinions on gangs. One wrote, “a gang won't give you a good future." Another said she doesn't like watching murders on TV, but she could handle evidence about murders during a trial.

Four of the six defendants have been accused of murders, including Arnold Council and Paris Poe. They allegedly murdered Wilbert Moore, a drug dealer who was cooperating with police, in 2006.

Poe is also accused of murdering an FBI informant in 2013.

When jury selection is completed, prosecutors are expected to open their case by portraying the Hobos as a ruthless group of thugs, who would do anything to protect their lucrative drug trade.

Pretrial documents filed by prosecutors say the Hobos would mostly just "sleep and rob, sleep and rob," adding, "The Hobos felt they could go anywhere in the city, and no other gang would bother them."

After a shooting, prosecutors say the gang members would use hand sanitizer to remove the gunshot residue. Or they purchased batting gloves to keep the residue off their hands in the first place.

And prosecutors say they profited from their crimes. One of the defendants, Gregory Chester, gambled so much that he became a member of the elite Seven Stars Awards program at the Horseshoe Casino in Hammond.

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