CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Jury selection in the Kevin Olsen rape trial started Wednesday morning with prosecutors asking each potential juror questions.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police arrested Olsen in February 2017 after a woman he was dating at the time told police that Olsen assaulted her in a house in the University City area after the two had a night out in Uptown. At the time of the allegation Olsen was a quarterback for UNC Charlotte’s football team.
Olsen is facing three counts of second degree rape and one count of second degree sex offense.
Olsen is in court sitting next to his lawyers.
The judge said the trial could last two-to-three weeks.
During jury selection, the prosecutor read off a list of people who could testify and the defendant’s older brother - Panthers tight end Greg Olsen - is on the list.
Jurors were told they can’t give the case any more or less weight because of who the defendant’s brother is.
That they have to be impartial and ignore who Greg Olsen is.
Jurors were also reminded that the defendant Kevin Olsen has a right to testify and is presumed innocent. But if he takes the stand - that doesn’t mean they can presume he’s telling the truth.
Since this is a rape case, prosecutors told potential jurors that the law does not require the victim to fight back, does not require the victim to have injuries, and it doesn’t require the victim to say “no." She told the jury pool that consent induced by fear is not consent.
So far, six people have been excused from jury duty in the trial for a variety of reasons including child care difficulties, concerns about sitting in judgment of another person, and financial difficulties.
They were a few who said that in their minds Kevin Olsen is guilty.
Three of the potential jurors removed are men who said they had already made up their minds. One man said he believes Kevin Olsen is guilty and said if it were his relative, Olsen wouldn't have made it to court.
The defense argued that the comment by the potential juror that Olsen is guilty tainted the entire jury pool and the defense wanted a new jury pool. The prosecutor argued against it. The judge denied the request.
Jury selection resumes Thursday morning.