The second-degree murder trial of 37-year-old Richard Williams began with jury selection Monday morning at the Manatee County Judicial Center.
Williams is accused of killing his girlfriend’s 17-month-old son, William “Quincey” Pollard, on July 11, 2015.
On that day, Williams was babysitting Quincey and his 2-year-old daughter while girlfriend Courtney Pollard went to work at 2:10 p.m. According to court documents, Williams called Pollard at 9:35 p.m. saying that something was wrong with Quincey. In the background, Quincey could be heard gurgling.
Quincey was pronounced dead at Lakewood Ranch Medical Center one hour later.
The autopsy showed that his death was caused by blunt-force trauma to the head, causing his brain to swell.
Williams has been out on a $100,000 bond since Jan. 28, 2016.
From morning to afternoon on Monday, 55 potential jurors were asked a variety of questions. From a more general sense, Assistant State Attorney Julie Ann Binkley and defense attorney Jennifer Fury asked potential jurors if they had heard or read anything about the case and if they understand their role as a juror.
But specific to the case, potential jurors were asked if they knew any of the witnesses, if they had any children and what kind of patience it takes, especially for the “terrible 2’s,” for example. They were also questioned about their understanding of the charge of second-degree murder, specifically that premeditation is not required, if “the system” was too aggressive or not aggressive enough on child abuse issues and if they would be able to view autopsy photos.
One potential juror said he knew Williams’ father.
At least eight potential jurors had been excused by the end of Monday.
Remaining potential jurors were asked to return at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday so the defense could question them.