MARION COUNTY, Fla. - A jury was seated and opening statements wrapped up Tuesday in the Michael Bargo murder trial.
Four people are already serving life sentences in the case, but prosecutors said the 21-year-old Bargo was the ring-leader and triggerman who killed 15-year-old Seath Jackson in 2011 over a rivalry involving a girlfriend.
Prosecutors made it clear in court that they believe Bargo planned every detail of the killing. They said he masterminded the plan, using an ex-girlfriend, Amber Wright, to send text messages to lure Jackson to a home in Summerfield while they waited to beat him and then kill him.
Prosecutors on Tuesday described the gruesome crime to the panel of
12 jurors, saying the group killed Jackson and then dismembered his body and burned the remains.
Throughout jury selection, the judge and attorneys seemed concerned about all the media attention the case has received.
On Tuesday, the defense also questioned jurors extensively about their views on the death penalty.
"I remember some things that gave me an opinion," said one potential juror.
"And what is that opinion?" asked the judge.
"I think, I hate to say it, but I think he's guilty," the potential juror said.
The jury of eight men and four women were seated
Tuesday, and prosecutors began their opening statements.
If convicted, Bargo could be sentenced to death.