Prosecutor claims a juror in Antonio Armstrong Jr.’s trial is being ‘purposely invasive’ and ‘deceptive’

Antonio Armstrong Jr. and his attorneys Rick Detoto and Chris Collins (Jason Nguyen, Copyright 2023 by KPRC Click2Houston - All rights reserved.)

Houston – Two jurors were called back to court Friday for questioning on what they heard dealing with the Antonio Armstrong Jr. trial.

Prosecutors accuse Armstrong Jr. of killing his mother, Dawn, and father, Antonio Sr., when he was 16 years old.

Prosecutors Ryan Trask and John Jordan (Copyright 2023 by KPRC Click2Houston - All rights reserved.)

The first juror called into question is an ethics and human resource manager. The juror contacted the court about information she heard from her boss and coworker.

“I wanted to make sure I disclosed that. I don’t know anyone in this case,” the juror told the court.

Judge Kelli Johnson asked the juror what she remembers about the conversations.

The juror shared before being selected for jury service on the third panel that her boss, a chief ethics officer, brought the case up.

The juror said the boss told her, “‘Hopefully, you don’t get pulled for that case.”

She added, “He did not give me his opinion.”

But there is another question at hand with the juror and her boss.

The juror called the court to report what her boss said. Allegedly, during a call with the bailiff, there was a mention of Armstrong Jr.’s high school.

The juror claims that she learned the defendant went to Kinkaid High School Friday in court, but the bailiff, who was not present in court, shared with the judge that the juror told her she learned that her boss’ children went to the Kinkaid School with him.

“I did not tell her a school. I did not know the school until today,” the juror said.

The juror was questioned in-depth by prosecutors on how she would know such a detail. The juror responded she only knows what was provided to her during voir dire.

The second issue she was questioned about deals with her co-worker.

The colleague brought up the case after the individual voir dire during lunch.

The juror claims she shut down the conversation.

Prosecutor John Jordan wants to remove the juror because his team believes she is being, “purposely invasive” and “deceptive.”

Defense attorney Rick Detoto argued she has twice qualified herself for the jury in front of the court.

Antonio Armstrong Jr. and his attorneys Rick Detoto and Chris Collins (Copyright 2023 by KPRC Click2Houston - All rights reserved.)

This juror will come back on May 31. In the meantime, the court will hear from the bailiff under oath about what was said during the initial phone call dealing with the school.

The second juror called back to the court and explained his wife and sister-in-law worked at “Let Us Play” daycare.

She told her husband, while working there, she took care of the accused and his brother, Josh Armstrong.

“She just said the only case in Houston she knew was Mr. Armstrong.”

A total of 48 jurors were also expected to return on May 31.

Judge Johnson gave attorneys more information about alternate jurors. In addition to the 12 jurors who have yet to be picked, there will be four alternates in case something happens to the original dozen.

About the Author:

As an Emmy award-winning journalist, Jason strives to serve the community by telling in-depth stories and taking on challenges many pass over. When he’s not working, he’s spending time with his girlfriend Rosie, and dog named Dug.