He is accused of initiating a Feb. 13, 2009, shoot-out with police at Broad Street and Olney Avenue after a cabdriver called 911 and said Scrugs was threatening him.
Pawlowski, 25, a five-year veteran, was hit in the upper chest by a bullet that passed over the top of his bulletproof vest. He was the most recent city police officer killed in the line of duty - the seventh in three violent years.
Jury selection is often protracted in death penalty cases because of the need to find jurors who are open to a sentence of death by lethal injection, but also willing, if warranted, to impose life in prison without parole.
The death penalty issue is further complicated when a police officer is the victim and the subject of intense media coverage.
Lawyers in the Pawlowski case also have come up against a challenge becoming more commonplace in large cities such as Philadelphia: prospective jurors who know a homicide victim or a convicted murderer.
As of Sunday, according to the Philadelphia police, 248 homicides were recorded this year. That is slightly above the total of 237 for the same period in 2009.
Familiarity with a killing or a killer does not automatically exclude a potential juror. But it can make defense lawyers and prosecutors uncomfortable enough to exercise a preemptory challenge, a veto of a prospective juror without having to state a reason.
Contact staff writer Joseph A. Slobodzian at 215-854-2985 or firstname.lastname@example.org.