Trial of man accused of killing UNC student body president Eve Carson begins this week

Laurence Alvin Lovette
Laurence Alvin Lovette

(CBS/WRAL) HILLSBOROUGH, N.C. - Jury selection begins today in the trial of one of the two men accused of killing University of North Carolina Chapel Hill student body president Eve Carson in 2008.

Laurence Alvin Lovette, Jr., 20, is charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of Carson. Authorities say Lovett and Demario James Atwater kidnapped Carson, forced her to withdraw money from an ATM, and then shot her five times. 

Lovette has pleaded not guilty. Atwater pleaded guilty to first-degree murder and other charges and is serving two life sentences.

Lovette is also charged with first-degree murder in the death of Duke University student Abhijit Mahato, 29, whose body was found in his apartment. On Monday, his attorney asked the judge to bar the prosecution from presenting evidence about the Mahato case during Lovette's trial.

According to CBS affiliate WRAL, District Attorney Jim Woodall argued that there were many similarities between the two killings - both of which the prosecution says were motivated by a desire to steal money from ATMs - making the Mahato case relevant.

The judge agreed and denied the defense's request. Jury selection is expected to take four or five days.