Security tight as murder trial of gang leader begins - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Security tight as murder trial of gang leader begins

Tight security for Julius Webster's trial. (Source: WOIO) Tight security for Julius Webster's trial. (Source: WOIO)
It was security like none seen in years, if ever.  The Sheriff's SWAT team was guarding the jurors who will hear a murder case.  

In what is known as a jury view they visited the area of 71st and Superior where the killing of Leon Marks happened in late August.  He was gunned down outside a bar.  The juror's attention was drawn to it and other locations that will be highlighted at trial. 

The reason for the tight security is Julius Webster, a leader of the Heartless Felons gang. 
 
Judge Michael Astrab feared for the safety of jurors, and possible intimidation by other gang members if juror's identities were released. 
Webster was on scene in a Sheriff's vehicle but never got out of the vehicle.
 
The tight security continued at the Justice Center after the jury view.  Everyone entering had to sign in, provide a photo ID and go through
a metal detector.  No camera's or cell phones except for credentialed media. Again the concern is that another gang member simply taking a picture of a witness or juror would be intimidating.  A larger than normal compliment of deputies wearing bullet proof vests kept a close eye on the crowd.
 
To be sure Webster has a heartless band of followers in the felons -- we documented repeated attacks on other juvenile detainee's at the Juvenile Justice Center, many of them unsuspecting as they were sucker punched. 

In a twisted way it is a way to gain stature or street cred in the gang.  

It is irrational thinking like that that led to Judge Astrab installing the extra security?

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