Jurors hear details on Nicole Lovell's 2016 killing at first day of trial Tuesday
The prosecution has now called its third witness, medical examiner, Dr. Gayle Suzuki. Suzuki did the autopsy on Nicole Lovell.
Suzuki has testifed as to Lovell's injury. She said Lovell's injuries are not consistent with falling on a stick, because a lot of the wounds have sharp edges. She testified that the injuries with Lovell's broken vertebrae are consistent with Lovell being alive at the time of that injury.
Sukuki did a full work-up on Lovell's forensive evidence. She took fingernail clippings and other evidence from Lovell's body. Those were sent and analyzed for the autopsy report. There was no alcohol or illegal drugs in Lovell's system.
The medical examiner also testified that Lovell was not pregnant at the time of her death. According to pre-trial court documents, Natalie Keepers told police that Eisenhauer was worried that Nicole Lovell was pregnant.
Prior to Suzuki's testimony, Kevin Harth, formerly of the Virginia State Police, testified. He is one of the officers who found Lovell's body in North Carolina.
The prosecution has called its first witness, Tammy Weeks. Weeks is Nicole Lovell's mother.
Weeks started her testimony talking about Lovell's liver transpant. Lovell had a liver transplant when she was just 10 months old. She had a scar on her stomach from that surgery and also a scar on her neck from when her lung collapsed.
She then started talking about Nicole's last day. Lovell went to the mall and got matching necklaces with her best friend.
The night of January 26, Weeks says that Lovell took a shower and went to her bedroom. Weeks said it was common for Lovell to push her dresser up against her bedroom door and play dress up. Weeks then said that when she went to give Lovell her anti-rejection medicine for her liver the next morning, she pushed open the door and felt that the window was open.
After seeing that Lovell wasn't in her bedroom, Weeks called several of Lovell's friends and went to neighbor's houses to look for Lovell. When she couldn't find her, Weeks says she called Blacksburg Police Department.
Weeks now talking about how Lovell took her cell phone and Minions blanket with her.
When asked the next time Weeks saw her daughter, she said "in the coffin."
Pettit then showed Weeks a picture of Lovell's body, to which Weeks said "that's my daughter."
The defense did not have any questions for Weeks.
Kris Olin, the attorney for Natalie Keepers, said he has "no comment" on the defense's allegations that Natalie Keepers, not David Eisenhauer is to blame for Nicole Lovell's death.
Defense attorney John Lichenstein is now addressing the jury for opening arguments. Lichenstein is now saying how David Eisenhauer simply wanted to clear out Nicole Lovell's phone. He is arguing that Natalie Keeper's is responsible for Lovell's death.
He has showed the jury a picture of a finger print on a shovel that was purchased at the Wal-Mart in Christiansburg. He also told the jury that Keepers bragged about planning Lovell's death.
Important to note, Natalie Keeper's attorney Kris Olin is in court for opening arguments.
Lichenstein is now telling the jury that Natalie Keepers has a long history of mental illness and also a fascination with knives. He has also mentioned Keepers' history of cutting herself. In pre-court motions Keepers has testified about her past mental health problems, including that she has cut herself. Keepers also testified that she made a promise to herself not to cut herself after leaving high school.
Opening arguments are now underway. Commonwealth's Attorney Mary Pettit is addressing the jury. Pettit begins her opening arguments comparing the evidence to a jigsaw puzzle. Pettit tells the jury, they will see different fragments of evidence, like pieces of a puzzle, but they must keep their eyes on the finished picture of the jigsaw puzzle.
After that metaphor, Pettit begins talking about 13-year-old Nicole Lovell's medical history. Lovell had a liver transplant when she was an infant, and is self-conscious because of that.
She then transitions to telling the jury about Nicole's final night before her disappearance and death.
Pettit now saying that on the day before Lovell went missing, Eisenhauer spent 30 minutes online researching knock-out drugs and different ways that law enforcement identifies a body.
The trial for David Eisenhauer, a former Virginia Tech student accused of killing 13-year-old Nicole Lovell is now underway at the Montgomery County Courthouse in Christiansburg.
Nicole Lovell's dad, David Lovell, is in attendance for the first day of the trial.
Lovell's grandfather and other family members are also in attendance, Her mother, Tammy Weeks, is scheduled to be called as a witness and is not in the courtroom for the start of the trial.
CHRISTIANSBURG, Va. (AP/WSET) -- Two years after the killing of a 13-year-old girl, jurors in the murder trial of a former Virginia Tech student are expected to hear details of her death.
Opening statements are scheduled Tuesday afternoon in the trial of David Eisenhauer. The former engineering student is accused of stabbing Nicole Lovell and slitting her throat after she climbed out her bedroom window to meet him.
Eight woman and six men were chosen as the jury with two alternates.
The trial will begin at 1 p.m. and both sides will get one hour for opening arguments; the trial could last 10 days.
Prosecutors say Lovell and Eisenhauer had developed a relationship through Kik, an instant messaging app.
Natalie Keepers, also an engineering student at Virginia Tech, told police Eisenhauer claimed he met Lovell at a party and may have had sex with her, but could not remember because he blacked out.
Keepers has been charged as an accessory and is scheduled to go on trial in September.
The defense has announced that it plans to call Keepers as a witness in Eisenhauer's trial.