Change of venue filed in Sean Bell case

January 6, 2008 9:00:00 PM PST
Eyewitness News has learned that attorneys in the Sean Bell case have filed a change of venue.Attorneys for detectives Michael Oliver, Gescard Isnora and Marc Cooper filed the motion, but it is not sitting well with Bell's fiance, family, friends, Al Sharpton and other supporters of the case staying in Queens.

"What they're doing is just causing more pain for my family," Sean Bell's fiancée, Nicole Paultre-Bell, said.

It's one of the reasons why Paultre-Bell said the upcoming trial of these police detectives should stay in Queens.

Queens District Attorney Richard Brown released the following statement:

"Nothing contained in the defendants' motion papers changes my belief that a fair and impartial jury can be found among the 2.3 million residents of Queens County. The motion will be vigorously opposed."

The detectives allegedly shot and killed Sean Bell in a hail of 50 bullets. They also injured two of his friends - Trent Benefield and Joseph Guzman - outside a Queens nightclub where the men were celebrating Bell's bachelor party. He was supposed to marry his fiancee later that day. The officers allegedly believed Bell had a gun.

"My family was ruined in Queens. These cops were indicted in Queens," Paultre-Bell said. "And this trial should stay in Queens."

Sharpton was joined by those who were with Bell that night. Joseph Guzman, kissing a necklace with an "S" on it for Sean, quoted Brown, who has said that with all the people in Queens, a change of venue should not be necessary.

The trial in the Bell shooting set to begin in Queens on February 4th in Harlem.


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