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crimesider

Lauren Burk Murder Trial: Defense Wanted Case Moved Before Jury Selection

Lauren Burk (Personal Photo)
Lauren Burk Murder Trial: Jury Selection Starting in Auburn University Student Slaying
Lauren Burk (Personal Photo)

OPELIKA, Ala. (CBS/AP) Attorneys for Courtney Lockhart, the man accused of killing Auburn University student Lauren Burk, have tried again to get his capital murder trial moved away from the university.

PICTURES: Lauren Burk, A Life Cut Short

Lockhart is accused of killing Burk, an 18-year-old Auburn freshman from Marietta, Ga., in 2008.

Before jury selection began Monday morning in Opelika, attorneys for Lockhart asked Circuit Judge Jacob Walker to move the trial because of weekend news coverage.

The judge declined for the second time. His previous decision not to move the trial was upheld by a state appeals court.

Burk was a freshman at Auburn when police say Lockhart kidnapped her in her own car and robbed her before shooting her and then dumping her body in a roadway.

Police say Lockhart then drove Burk's car to campus and set it on fire.

Burk was found wounded on Alabama Highway 147, and later died at a hospital.

Police say the 26-year-old defendant confessed after his arrest.

A gag order was placed over the case a month after the killing. All pretrial hearings have been closed to the media and public, and the court sealed the case to try to curb pretrial publicity.