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Officer’s fatal DWI trial starts today


– On Tuesday, attorneys agreed on a jury in the David Bisard case, seating a 12-member panel and three alternates.

The trial is expected to officially begin today, with both sides making their opening statements in the case, which is expected to last about a month.

The Marion County case was moved to Allen County this year because of intensive media coverage. It is being handled by Allen Superior Court Judge John Surbeck and will be heard by Allen County residents as members of the jury.

Marion County, however, will pay for the cost of the trial.

The suspended Indianapolis Metro Police Department officer is charged with reckless homicide, operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated causing death and criminal recklessness.

Bisard, 39, is accused of driving his squad car into the back of a pair of motorcycles stopped at a stop light in August 2010. One of the bikers, 30-year-old Eric Wells, was killed and two others were injured.

While he was out on bond, Bisard was arrested again this spring after police said he crashed a borrowed pickup truck into a guardrail in the Fishers area.

Bisard’s blood-alcohol concentration at the time of that crash was 0.22 percent, nearly three times the legal limit of 0.08 percent.

After that crash and the subsequent misdemeanor charges of operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated, Bisard’s bond was revoked and he has remained in jail.

According to Allen County Superior Court officials, the jury is made up of seven men and five women with one man and two women selected as alternates.

While the heart of the case is a traffic crash, dozens of pretrial motions and discussions have centered on in-fighting between the Marion County prosecutor’s office, Indianapolis officials and the police department over the handling of evidence in the case.