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Archive for Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Jury selection begins in retrial of manslaughter case

May 28, 2014

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Jury selection began Wednesday in the second trial of a Johnson County man who is accused of killing a Lawrence resident during an altercation in 2012.

Justin P. Gonzalez, 22, of Mission, is charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of Nicholas J. Sardina of Lawrence, who was 27 at the time of the incident.

Prosecutors say Sardina, an Iraq War veteran, died after being hit on the head with a beer bottle during an altercation at a house party near 14th and Kentucky. The defense argues that Gonzalez merely intervened when Sardina attacked another friend.

The first trial in December 2013 resulted in a hung jury.

Opening arguments could begin as early as Thursday. The trial is expected to last two weeks.

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