DURHAM — Jurors in the Crystal Mangum murder trial saw photographs of Reginald Daye in his Duke Hospital bed and heard from a forensic biologist Friday morning.
Mangum is on trial for murder in the death of her boyfriend, Daye, 46. She is accused of stabbing him at his apartment on April 3, 2011; he died at the hospital on April 13, 2011.
The photographs showed Daye at different times in his hospital bed and showed bandages that reportedly covered the stab wound or the surgical incision on his rib cage, scratches on his arm and back, a smaller wound on his back and a black eye.
One of the crime-scene investigators said Daye appeared to be in pain as he tried to move around in the bed so she could take the photos.
A former forensic biologist at the State Bureau of Investigaton lab in Raleigh told the jurors about tests she conducted to determine the presence of blood on various items including knives, that were taken from the crime scene at the Country Scene Apartments, where Daye lived with Mangum.
The trial got off to a slow start Friday after a juror told a judge that there had been conversation in the jury room about the case.
While the other jurors remained in the jury room, she told Superior Court Judge Paul Ridgeway that while she was in the jury room, another juror took charge of the group and told the other jurors in a rambling conversation they needed to remember they represented Durham and needed to be concerned about Durham’s image.
The juror told the judge that he mentioned politics and made reference to another trial.
In 2006, Mangum accused three Duke lacrosse players of raping her at a party after they hired her as a stripper. The charges were later dropped when the evidence did not back up her story but not before the alleged incident became a national news story.
Ridgeway asked the juror whether she thought the other juror meant they should focus on their duties as jurors and do the best job possible as jurors or whether she thought the other juror meant they should consider Durham’s image when considering Mangum’s guilt or innocence.
She said she thought the other juror meant they should consider Durham’s image as they deliberated.
After the juror informed the judge about the conversation in the jury room, he met with Mangum’s attorney, Daniel Meier, and Assistant District Attorney Charlene Franks in chambers to discuss the situation. They returned to the courtroom about 10 minutes later.
‘Talk about football’
When they returned, Ridgeway called each juror into the courtroom individually and told them he wanted to make sure they understood the rule about not talking about the case before they begin their deliberations.
He told the jurors they should not talk about anything involved in the case, the people involved in the case, anything they may have heard about the case or any other cases.
“You can talk about football. You can talk about your families. You can talk about your work or you can play cards; just don’t talk about this case,” he said.
He then asked each juror if any conversations they heard in the jury room might affect their ability to consider only the evidence they hear during the trial.
Each juror said they understood the rule and that so far, nothing had occurred that would prevent them from making a decision based only on the evidence and the law during the trial.
All the jurors gave a yes or no answer except for one juror who told the judge he spends most of his time in the jury room playing spades.
After the judge questioned each juror, the two attorneys said they were comfortable going forward with the trial, and Franks called her first witness of the day.