The first full day of jury deliberations in the trial of suspects in the murder of Baltimore bartender Alex Wroblewski was to begin Wednesday, but as the morning went on one juror was missing.
Testimony had concluded a day before. Two alternate jurors had been dismissed. All that remained was for 12 people to decide whether to convict a Virginia couple accused of gunning down Wroblewski in South Baltimore.
Except there were only 11 jurors present. The phone rang in the judge’s chambers. He then called the prosecutor and three defense attorneys into the empty courtroom.
Their missing juror was stuck home with her child.
“Her babysitter had an emergency,” Baltimore Circuit Judge Robert Taylor Jr. explained.
Upstairs, the 11 other jurors waited to begin deliberations. The law requires 12 to start. The judge had another murder trial coming up. He didn’t want to send them home to try again tomorrow.