A jury was sworn in today to hear the trial of a Co Antrim woman accused of the murder and attempted murder of her two young children.
The Antrim Crown Court jury of six men and six women were told the trial relates to allegations that on March 2, 2020, the 41-year-old murdered her two-year-old son and tried to murder her other son, who was just 11-months-old.
The woman, who cannot be identified to protect the younger child as well as her other children, denies the charges of murder and attempted murder.
Swearing in the jury, trial Judge Patricia Smyth said the case would last around four weeks and stressed to them that although she was aware “you have a million things to do and places to be… you are the most important feature of the criminal justice system”.
“You probably don’t feel like that yet, but you will do by the end of this trial,” she told the jury.
“It is you who decide the facts of this case and it is you who ultimately decide what the verdict should be.”
Judge Smyth then released them for the day as they will not begin to hear evidence until Tuesday, but she warned the jurors not to conduct any internet or social media research and not to discuss the case with anyone outside of their fellow jurors.
“The truth is that in England primarily, some jurors disobeyed those instructions and there have been prison sentences imposed,” said the judge.