Local News

Jury seated for trial of accused Carthage nursing home shooter

Posted July 27, 2011 4:45 p.m. EDT

— Opening arguments are set for Monday morning in the murder trial of a man accused of killing eight people at a Carthage nursing home two years ago.

Robert Kenneth Stewart could face the death penalty if convicted of killing seven patients and a nurse at the Pinelake Health and Rehabilitation Center on March 29, 2009.

Stewart's lawyers have said he was under the influence of alcohol and prescription medicine and is not legally responsible for his actions.

A Carthage police officer ended the rampage when he shot Stewart in the chest.

Stewart's estranged wife, Wanda Stewart, worked at the facility as a nursing assistant. She told WRAL News that she thinks he was gunning for her because she had left him weeks before the shooting.

Jurors were chosen in Stanly County because of extensive pre-trial publicity in Moore County. The jury will be bused to Carthage every day during the trial.