As jurors Friday began their second day of viewing sexually explicit videos, the spotlight turned away from Movie Buffs general manager Larry Warren Peterman's pornography distribution trial.

Instead, what seemed to be on trial are the 16 allegedly obscene videos Peterman ordered and made available for rental in an adults-only room of the Lehi and American Fork Movie Buffs stores in 1996.Despite efforts by Peterman's attorney to remind jurors that they are trying a person and not the movies, the focus of nearly everyone in Judge Lynn W. Davis' 4th District courtroom this week is on the videos. For nine Utah County jurors ranging in age from 19 to 72, there was no other choice Thursday afternoon after prosecutors turned out the lights and began playing "Buttbusters."

"We have to remember there's a human being whose freedom is at stake," said Peterman's attorney, Jerome Mooney. "He's become almost a side issue."

Actually, that appears to be just how prosecutors wanted it. They allowed the 16 counts of distributing pornography filed against Peterman to be reduced from third-degree felonies to class A misdemeanors, and accepted no-contest pleas from two of Peterman's associates.

The trial, which is expected to last through next week, has become a test case in which the only real issue is whether Utah County's definition of pornography is more prudish than anywhere else in the state. Other Movie Buffs stores in Utah, Idaho and Wyoming have rented - without problems - the same videos that Utah County police confiscated from the American Fork and Lehi stores on Oct. 25, 1996.

"What needs to be discovered by you folks is the community standard," Deputy Utah County Attorney Curtis L. Larson told jurors during opening statements Thursday. "What is the community standard? It's within you. All you have to do is discover it."

For 15 of the videos, jurors must simply determine whether the average person would deem that the videos appeal to a prurient interest in sex, whether they are patently offensive in their depiction of sexual conduct and whether they lack serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value.

Lucky for them, jurors aren't required to try to follow the movies' nonexistent plots. But they do have to listen to the films' coarse language and watch a succession of nude actors fondling one another and engaging in various forms of sex.

Jurors have watched the videos with little expression.

For the 16th videotape, "Shooting Star," which Mooney admits is more graphic than the others, jurors must also decide if Peterman knowingly possessed it or if it was planted in the American Fork store just hours before police served a search warrant there.

Mooney told jurors during his opening statement Thursday that a cable TV version of "Shooting Star" was purchased from the Movie Buffs store on Oct. 21, 1996, by Brett Bezzant, publisher of three northern Utah County newspapers under the name Newtah News Group.

Bezzant returned a copy of "Shooting Star" just four days later, but the copy returned was an unedited X-rated version of the movie, Mooney said. He didn't say if he believes Bezzant was cooperating with police to set up the Movie Buffs store just before the raid, but Mooney did say he plans to call Bezzant to the stand during the trial.

Mooney linked Bezzant to the mysterious video through video rental records ordered unsealed last month by U.S. District Judge Thomas Greene. The records previously were kept secret under an injunction in connection with a federal lawsuit filed by Movie Buffs owner Susan Janae Kingston against Utah County.

"As far as what they allege, it's really pretty ridiculous," Bezzant told the Deseret News. "I told the county attorney that I never remembered seeing that video.

"I think it's just an attempt to get even with me for our editorial position."

On Nov. 20, 1996, Bezzant authored a column in his weekly newspapers - The American Fork Citizen, Pleasant Grove Review and Lehi Free Press. The column urged readers to sign a petition - which also was printed in the newspapers - opposing the sale or rental of pornographic materials in northern Utah County. The column was in response to the Movie Buffs raid and an anti-pornography campaign organized by American Fork residents Doug and Michelle Brockbank.

On Thursday, bleary-eyed jurors were forced to watch the first 20 minutes of "Buttbusters" twice because of a malfunction with the 36-inch television set up by prosecutors in Davis' courtroom. The jury began viewing "The Anals of History" Friday morning, and attorneys planned to show them five videos per day Friday, Tuesday and Wednesday.