The cost of justice in the Ross Harris hot-car murder case

Justin Ross Harris is sentenced to life in prison, without possibility of parole, on Dec. 5 for killing his 22-month-old son Cooper. Bob Andres / bandres@ajc.com
Justin Ross Harris is sentenced to life in prison, without possibility of parole, on Dec. 5 for killing his 22-month-old son Cooper. Bob Andres / bandres@ajc.com

Credit: Bob Andres

Credit: Bob Andres

The Justin Ross Harris trial was an expensive legal spectacle that moved from one end of Georgia to another in search of an impartial jury.

It cost more than a half-million dollars to send Harris to prison for good. He was sentenced to life without the possiblity of parole on Dec. 5 after being convicted of intentionally killing his 22-month-old son, Cooper, by leaving him in a hot SUV in June.

» The AJC's "Breakdown" podcast on the Harris case

Just changing the venue of the trial from Mareitta to Brunswick cost taxpayers $149,000 in additional expenses, an AJC examination of expense records shows. Other expenses included food and lodging for the judge, legal fees for the defense and

Legal experts acknowedge that the proceeding was expensive, but they also said that American jurisprudence requires just that sort of time and effort.

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