Jennifer Hudson's Family Murder Trial Open to Public
The media and public will have front row seats during trial
Trial proceedings for the man accused of killing Jennifer Hudson’s family members will be open to the public, the Cook County Sheriff’s Office announced Tuesday.
In 2008, William Balfour was charged with the killings of Hudson’s mother, brother and 7-year-old nephew. The singer’s mother and brother were murdered inside their Chicago Englewood home. The body of the nephew, Julian King, was found in a parked SUV several days later. Balfour, the estranged ex-husband of Hudson’s sister, faces three counts of first-degree murder and one count of home invasion.
The seating will be on a first-come, first-served basis, and those interested are required to register for a seat the day before they wish to attend the trial, NBC News reported. Spectators must be 16 years of age or older.
The Judge also ordered that no cell phones, bags, purses or coats be brought into the courtroom. Journalists took defense to the Judge’s orders earlier this week, arguing that social media updates are essential to providing a play-by-play of the trial. Accommodations were made for the media.
The public tragedy came at a time when Hudson’s career reached its peak. She often accredited her success to her family, especially her mother. Hudson has remained somewhat hushed on the matter in interviews over the years.
The trial is set for Monday, April 23, 2012 at the Cook County Criminal Courthouse.