CRIPPLE CREEK, Colo. — Jury selection in the trial against Patrick Frazee got underway Monday at the Teller County Courthouse in Cripple Creek.
A total of 1,750 summons were issued for jury selection. On Monday, 85 potential jurors reported to the courthouse and 32 were dismissed for various reasons. One person was excused for his connection to a Fort Carson Investigation Unit.
On Wednesday, Teller County Court Clerk said the group of potential jurors will be whittled down to 91 people from that pool 12 jurors and 4 alternates will be selected.
Frazee is accused of killing his fiance, Kelsey Berreth, last Thanksgiving. He was arrested a month later in connection with her disappearance.
Frazee is also accused of asking his ex-girlfriend, Krystal Lee Kenney, to help him kill Berreth on three separate occasions. Kenney pleaded guilty to her involvement in the case, and faces up to three years in prison. She will testify against Frazee as part of her plea deal.
Teller County Judge Scott Sells believes the jury will be seated by Friday morning and plans for opening statements to take place later that day. In addition, Sells told potential jurors he expects the trial to last three weeks, hopfully wrapping up by November 22.
Criminal defense lawyer Patrick Mika, who is not involved in the case, said the defense will most likely focus in on Kenney, and the inconsistencies in her earlier testimony.
“She is the only one that has provided information about location of the body, how this all occurred,” Mika said. “She may very well have been the person, along with somebody else, that committed this offense, and that’s what I think the defense should focus on, is that the person that has the most knowledge, has that knowledge because she is the one that committed this crime.”
Mika went on to say having all 16 jurors selected by Friday may be difficult.
“This process is important and what’s important in the defense standpoint is to be able to find those individuals in that case that are willing to listen to your theory of defense,” Micah said. “That’s going to be difficult in this high profile case because it’s a murder case and that combination will make it difficult to find someone that doesn’t have pre-disposed ideas or notions.”
Resources for victims of domestic violence
National Domestic Violence Hotline: Call the hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or visit thehotline.org for free help 24 hours a day.
Violence Free Colorado: Visit violencefreecolorado.org to find resources by county in Colorado. The website also has other resources, including information on how to help a loved one who is being abused.
TESSA of Colorado Springs: Call the 24-Hour Safe Line at 719-633-3819, or visit tessacs.org.
YWCA of Pueblo: Call the 24-hour crisis hotline at 719-545-8195, or visit ywcapueblo.com