Fulton County

‘That’s where I’m at a lot:’ Cobb man says he can be on YSL jury since he stays at mom’s Fulton home

FULTON COUNTY, Ga. — A potential juror in the case against hip-hop superstar Young Thug and the alleged YSL criminal street gang doesn’t actually live in Fulton County.

Defense attorneys and prosecutors have spent most of the last nine months trying to seat a jury.

A motion from the prosecution says they have since learned that one man in the pool claiming to live in Fulton County actually lives in Cobb County. They say the juror, referred to as Juror B, is ineligible to serve because he holds a residential lease in Cobb County.

The motion says the juror testified that he holds a lease in Cobb County and no one else lives at the address. It goes on to say that when Juror B was asked about the Fulton County address where he claimed to live, he said it was his mother’s house.

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“That is where I grew up. That is where I’m at a lot,” Juror B said. He went on to say he spends the night there “about four times out of the week...maybe more sometimes.”

The motion says surveillance conducted by the State confirmed Juror B spent the night at his Cobb County residence 28 out of the last 30 nights. License plate readers have also placed him in Cobb County more than 300 times between August 11 and October 3, 2023.

Defense attorney Suri Chadha Jimenez left the case when all of the charges were dismissed against his client, but he remembers when Judge Ural Glanville heard both sides and allowed Juror B to be on the panel of potential jurors.

“Trial is war and, in war, you lose some battles and you win some, but you move on to the next one,” Chadha Jimenez said.

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Manny Arora says as a defense attorney and a former Fulton County prosecutor, he sees both sides and includes why the prosecution took the extraordinary step of obtaining surveillance of a potential juror.

“Because then the jury’s invalid and the whole trial that would go on after they learned that the person is a non-Fulton County resident. It’s like the trial never happened. It would be an invalid trial,” Arora explained.

A Fulton County District Attorney’s Office statement said,

As is permitted by law, we review public records of jurors to ensure they are eligible to serve on a jury, particularly in major cases. Our review of this juror’s public information indicates that he lives in Cobb County, making it illegal for him to serve on a Fulton County jury. A further review confirmed he is ineligible. At no time did anyone from the DA’s office have contact with the juror.

If this juror illegally serves on this jury, any guilty verdicts that are returned by the jury automatically would be overturned on appeal.

The motion also suggests that Juror B had “avowed and unrehabilitated bias in favor of the defendant and against the State.”

Chadha Jimenez says the prosecution could have waited until later in the process and used a strike to eliminate that juror from the jury panel. He said that strikes are limited and precious, but the prosecution has the same number as the defense lawyers combined.

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