Trial date, venue set in Brian Horn murder trial - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Trial date, venue set in Brian Horn murder trial

Posted: Updated: July 24, 2013 04:25 PM CDT
Twice-convicted sex offender and taxi driver Brian Horn is awaiting trial in the abduction and murder of 12-year-old Justin Bloxom. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty. Twice-convicted sex offender and taxi driver Brian Horn is awaiting trial in the abduction and murder of 12-year-old Justin Bloxom. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty.
12-year-old Justin Bloxom was killed in March of 2010, allegedly at the hands of convicted sex offender Brian Horn. 12-year-old Justin Bloxom was killed in March of 2010, allegedly at the hands of convicted sex offender Brian Horn.
MANSFIELD, LA (KSLA) -

After several delays, a trial date and venue has been set for the man accused in the 2010 abduction and murder of a 12-year-old Stonewall boy.

Desoto Parish District Attorney Richard Johnson says the first degree murder trial of Brian Horn will begin with jury selection on February 10, 2014 in East Baton Rouge Parish.

Also at the hearing today, the FBI investigators who recovered the cell phone from Horn's truck were questioned by both sides in the case in order to determine if they would be qualified to testify at trial.

Special District Attorney, Brady O'Calaghan called to the stand three men who testified that their job was to perform forensic analysis on electronics, such as cell phones, in order to find information that's hidden or encrypted.

"Louisiana and federal law requires us to make a baseline showing that the science underlying their testing is good, and that's what we did today," said O'Calaghan.

Horn, a 36-year-old, twice-convicted sex offender and cab driver, is accused of posing as a 15-year-old girl via text message to lure Bloxom out of his friend's house and into his cab in March 2010.

The boy's body was found in a wooded area along U.S. Highway 171 the next day.

Jury selection was originally set to get under way on June 24 in Lafayette, in an effort to find a pool of jurors less likely to have heard of or have much knowledge about the case. The trial itself will take place in DeSoto Parish. A motion has been made for a change of venue, but Judge Robert Burgess has not made a ruling yet.

"We did not object to the original change of venue motion that was filed there have been some changes on the other venues were available and the district attorney is going to have to review, but it's largely at the trial judge's discretion where and how he selects another venue," said O'Calaghan.

In mid-April, Horn's attorneys asked for and was granted more time to prepare.

The state then asked for an August trial date, but the defense argued they would need more time than that to research and compile all of the information that would be considered in the penalty phase of the trial, should Horn be convicted.

Johnson has said the state will be seeking the death penalty for Horn if he is convicted.

Bloxom's mother Amy Witham Fletcher says she is pleased that a trial date has been set and is ready to move forward.

Laws in Justin Bloxom's name have been passed in Louisiana, Texas and Oklahoma. Fletcher says there are efforts to pass similar laws in Arkansas and Mississippi and eventually in every state.

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