Defense rests in Sean Bell trial

Prosecutions opts out of rebuttal case; closings could be next
April 14, 2008 3:31:47 AM PDT
The trial of three police officers charged in the shooting death of Sean Bell moved closer to its conclusion Thursday.The defense and prosecution both have rested.

The testimony phase of this trial is now over. The detectives arrived just before 9 a.m., knowing that soon their fates will be in the hands of one man, Justice Arthur Cooperman. They made the decision two months ago to waive their rights to a jury trial after they lost their bid to move the case to a different venue.

Their lawyers made a motion to dismiss all charges in the case, a routine legal maneuver, arguing the prosecution did not make their case beyond a reasonable doubt.

The judge ruled that defense motion is denied with respect to all defendants and all counts. The charges stand.

Closing arguments will take place Monday at 9 a.m. The defense begins, with three statements on behalf of the three detectives.

Prosecution statement expected Tuesday and are likely to take a few hours. The judge will have case, most likely, by Tuesday afternoon.

His decision could come any time after that.