Opening statements begin in Mickelson capital murder trial - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Opening statements begin in Mickelson capital murder trial

Facing the death penalty: Eric Dale Mickelson, 42 Facing the death penalty: Eric Dale Mickelson, 42
SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) -

Open arguments have begun in the death penalty trial of a man accused of the 2007 death and dismemberment of an 86-year-old retired painting contractor.

Eric Mickelson, now 42, is charged with the first degree murder of Charles Martin Junior.

Investigators say Martin was strangled to death when Mickelson and a female accomplice allegedly broke into his home.  Martin's dismembered body was later found in various parts of Caddo Parish.

On Saturday, twelve jurors plus two alternates were selected and opening statements began. Judge Scott Crichton is presiding.

Mickelson's former girlfriend, Beverly Arthur, is also charged in Martin's murder. Prosecutors say she had been taking Martin's money to feed their drug habits, and the motive for the killing was to rob the elderly man to keep him from going to police and to steal more money for drugs. She will be tried later.

Following his arrest in the Martin murder case in 2007, Mickelson allegedly confessed to killing Kristi O'Pry 11 years earlier.  He was the last person seen with O'Pry before she disappeared in July of 1996. Mickelson told detectives he strangled O'Pry, then disposed of her body in a pond on his Woolworth Road property. He was later charged with second-degree murder in that case.


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