Jury selection for trial of former Summit Middle School teacher accused of sexual assault to enter fourth day

Summit Middle School teacher Leonard Grams, 62, was arrested Aug. 9, 2022, on several charges of sexual assault of a child.
Summit County Sheriff’s Office/Courtesy photo

Jury selection for the trial of a former Summit Middle School gym teacher accused of sexual assault will continue into a fourth day, Thursday, Sept. 21.

Leonard Grams, 62, has pleaded not guilty to five Class 4 felony charges of sexual assault on a child and three Class 3 felony charges of sexual assault on a child by a person in a position of trust, according to court records. His trial is expected to last two weeks.

The charges Grams faces stem from allegations of sexual contact raised in the fall of 2021 by three middle school students who had classes with him, according to an affidavit in support of an arrest warrant filed in the case.

Dozens of potential jurors filled the courtroom Wednesday, as Judge Karen Romeo thanked them for their patience. Romeo, Gram’s defense team and the prosecution spent the day interviewing potential jurors behind closed doors.

Romeo said that she had been hoping to move to a group interview of potential jurors Wednesday but ran out of time. She said jury selection will resume Thursday by selecting 28 potential jurors for a group interview.

After the group interview, the defense and prosecution will each dismiss seven potential jurors, leaving 14 remaining people — 12 jurors and two alternates. Though there were some concerns early on since less than half the potential jurors summoned to appear in court showed up, the judge said she expects to be able to seat a jury.

“We are making great headway,” Romeo said.

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