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Judge Rules Murder Trial Will Stay In Brown County
Updated June 2, 2016 7:31 AM | Filed under: Crime
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(NASHVILLE) - On Wednesday, Brown County Circuit Court Judge Judith Stewart ruled she was confident Daniel Messel would receive a fair trial.

50-year-old Messel is accused of the April 2015 beating death of 22-year-old Hannah Wilson, an IU student from Fishers. Messel was arrested after police found his cell phone near Wilson's body in a vacant lot at State Road 45 and Plum Creek Road in Brown County. Wilson had been reported missing the day before the discovery of her body.

On Wednesday, 29 Brown County residents were called to Brown Circuit Court as test jurors to help Judge Stewart determine if jurors should be selected from another county where the case has not been so highly publicized.

Judge Stewart ruled she is confident a fair and impartial jury can be selected in Brown County for the trial, set to begin August 1.

Nearly all of those questioned told officials they could set aside what they heard or read in media accounts if they were to be chosen as a juror in the case.

But Public Defender Dorie Maryan is skeptical and wants a change of venue. She is mostly concerned potential jurors might know about Messel's criminal history, which includes convictions and prison time for violence against women, and also suggestions by police and a prison inmate that Messel could have been involved in the unsolved 2011 disappearance of IU student Lauren Spierer all which have been in newspapers and on TV and social media.

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