WESTON, W.Va. — Jury selection will continue Friday ahead of a projected Monday start date in the trial of Lena Lunsford-Conaway.
Judge Jacob Reger, the Lewis County Prosecutor’s Office, and Lunsford-Conaway’s defense team could not finish the process of seating a jury before end of the business day Thursday.
Lunsford-Conaway, 35, is charged with multiple felony counts related to the 2011 disappearance and presumed death of her then 3-year-old daughter Aliayah Lunsford.
She was arrested in November 2016 in Florida and extradited to West Virginia more than five years after the September 24, 2011 disappearance of Aliayah Lunsford.
Five members of a 24-member panel have been dismissed for their relationship to various witnesses. A larger pool is feeding into that panel, which needs to be whittled down to 20 people — 18 jurors and two alternate jurors.
Attorneys are under a gag order until the trial is completed.
A lengthy witness list includes Lunsford’s ex-husband Ralph Lunsford, as well as Aliayah’s siblings, Kiera and Destiny Lunsford.
The trial is expected to last two weeks.