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UPDATE: The special prosecutor appointed to the case, T. Shawn Hervey, just announced that the surrogate mom is on the government's witness list and will testify against Carpenter, as will two celebrity photographers. Although her identity has hardly been a secret, Hervey today publicly named Michelle Ross as the surrogate who was allegedly targeted by the plaintiff.
Sex and the city? Check. Now it's time for justice in the boonies.
Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick will be carefully monitoring the goings-on in an Ohio courtroom this week as the trial unfolds involving a local lawman accused of masterminding a break-in at the home of the surrogate carrying the A-listers' twins to dig up dirt on the celeb twosome for the tabloids.
Jury selection kicked off today in the case of Martins Ferry Police Chief Barry Carpenter, 40. He's facing multiple felonies, among them burglary and receiving stolen property, and has been suspended without pay pending the trial's outcome at the Belmont County Common Pleas Court.
Opening statements will begin once both sides settle on a panel. According to local station WTRF, the judge asked the 70 potential jurors if they were aware of the case, and everyone raised their hands except one.
Carpenter's alleged accomplice, Bridgeport Sheriff Chad Dojack, 29, faces similar charges and is due to stand trial Jan. 12. Another man, Bruce Callarik, the son of Bridgeport's mayor, is penciled in as a witness and faces a lesser charge of complicity to receiving stolen property.
All three have pleaded not guilty. If convicted, Carpenter could face up a maximum of 21 years in prison and fines totaling $45,000, while Dojack could get up to 14 years and fines of $30,000, and Callarik would face 18 months in the big house and $5,000 in fines.
Parker made a point of calling for tabloids to lay off the surrogate while she carried the couple's twin girls to term.
Neither Broderick nor Parker is expected to appear for any of the trials, but a publicist for the couple did release an earlier statement saying "Matthew and Sarah Jessica have complete faith in the legal system."
(Originally published Nov. 16, 2009, at 9:05 a.m. PT)
From tabloid tattletales to reality-TV wannabes, E! Online's got 'em all in our Court Appearances photo gallery.