Local News

Opening statements now Wednesday in UNC murder trial

Posted December 6, 2011 10:07 a.m. EST
Updated December 6, 2011 4:15 p.m. EST

— Opening statements are now expected Wednesday morning in the trial of a man charged in the shooting death of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's student body president more than three years ago.

After six days of jury selection, prosecutors and defense attorneys chose the last alternate juror Tuesday afternoon in the case of Laurence Alvin Lovette Jr., who is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Eve Carson.

Twelve jurors and two alternates had been chosen by Monday afternoon and Superior Court Judge Allen Baddour had initially anticipated opening statements after lunch Tuesday, a court spokeswoman said. When the process wasn't complete Tuesday morning, he rescheduled them for 9:30 a.m. Wednesday.

WRAL News plans to cover the trial live on WRAL.com. Sign up for breaking news and video alerts to be notified when opening statements begin.

Authorities say Lovette, 21, and Demario Atwater kidnapped Carson, 22, and took her to several ATMs, eventually withdrawing $1,400. Her body was found in the early-morning hours of March 5, 2008, about a mile from the Chapel Hill campus. She had been shot five times with a handgun and a 12-gauge shotgun.

Last year, Atwater, 25, pleaded guilty to state and federal charges in the case and was sentenced to two life prison terms.

Lovette will not face the death penalty because he was a minor at the time of the shooting.